Documenting North America's past & present covered bridges


Conewago Chapel or Blue Spring, Adams County

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Inventory Number: PA/38-01-10x
County: Adams County
Township: Conewago - Mount Pleasant
Bridge Name: Conewago Chapel or Blue Spring
Crosses: South Branch Conewago Creek
Truss type: Burr
Spans: 1
Length: 84' span, 97' 4" overall
Roadway Width: 14'
Built: 1879
Builder: William Shanefelter
When Lost: Aug 1899
Cause: Burned
Latitude: N39 49.35
Longitude: W077 02.58
See a map of the area
Topographic map of the area
Directions: About 2½ miles northwest of McSherrystown Boro. Fish and Game Road, a township road, leads up to the bridge on the west end, while Edgegrove Road (LR01060 - SR2008) at the approach to the bridge), leads up to the east end.

Conewago Chapel or Blue Spring Bridge, Conewago-Mount Pleasant, Adams County, PA. Built 1899 Arson June 14, 1985
Stephen Stroup Collection

Conewago Chapel or Blue Spring Bridge, Conewago-Mount Pleasant, Adams County, PA. Built 1899 Arson June 14, 1985
November 1966 Photo, Thomas G. Kipphorn Collection

Conewago Chapel or Blue Spring Bridge, Conewago-Mount Pleasant, Adams County, PA. Built 1899 Arson June 14, 1985
Henry C. Falk Photo, Thomas G. Kipphorn Collection

County #58. There are three entries in the Harold E. Colestock manuscript Yesterdays Bridges-Old Adams County Bridges. Although the structural characteristics of the first wooden bridge are unknown, the second and third were covered bridges: "035 1848--"Blue Spring"--!n Conewago Township, a wooden bridge with a 75 foot span was built across the Little Conewago Creek. It was on the road leading from Adam's Mill, near Conewago Chapel to Hanover. The contract was with Adam Slagle for $780, dated July 10, 1848. Gettysburg's Sentinel had news of the contract." #2: "069 1879--''Blue Spring"--This was the second Blue Spring bridge. A wooden bridge was erected across the Conewago Creek, between Lilly's Mill and Conewago Chapel. The contract date was September 25, 1879, let to William Shanefelter, at a cost of $643. This information was in the Gettysburg newspaper, Star and Sentinel. An article in The New Oxford Item, on August 18, 1899, states: the bridge was burned and had to be replaced. The McSherrystown Bi-Centennial book states, in 1899 a bunch of drunken fisherman burnt it to the ground and it was replaced by another covered bridge. This bridge was owned by the state according to The Gettysburg Times, on January 2, 1952. #3: "096 1899--"BIue Spring”-- A third bridge, a covered timber truss bridge, was constructed at Blue Spring. It was erected, according to The New Oxford Item of August 18, 1899 just west of Conewago Chapel. It spanned the South Branch of Conewago Creek, connecting Mount Pleasant and Conewago Townships. The bridge was 84 feet long. The contract was to J. F. Sach's for $792. This bridge was to replace the old bridge, built in 1879, which was destroyed by fire. It was again destroyed by fire from vandalism on June 14, 1985 and was never replaced. This was bridge #12, owned by the state.
Lane, Oscar F.. World Guide to Covered Bridges, 1972, page 58
Moll, Fred J.. Pennsylvania's Covered Bridges - Our Heritage, 2004, pages 74-75
Kipphorn, Thomas. Information received by email, June 2013
Kipphorn, Thomas. Information received by email, January 2007
Colestock, Harold E.. Yesterdays Bridges: Old Adams County Bridges, 1997, Pages 8-9, 15 and 20

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