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Bailey Island Bridge, Bailey Island

4.9
#51 of 115 in Sightseeing in Maine
Bridge Landmark
The Bailey Island Bridge is a historic bridge in the town of Harpswell within Cumberland County in the state of Maine.HistoryFor many years, the residents of Bailey Island, Maine, advocated that a bridge be built to connect their island with Orr's Island. The town of Harpswell, Maine, which encompasses both islands, turned down the request. However, when the Maine Legislature drafted a law allowing the state and counties to fund bridge construction, a plan emerged to build such a bridge. A contract was signed in 1926, with construction beginning on the Bailey Island Bridge in 1927 and finishing in 1928. The engineer for the project was Llewelyn N. Edwards, bridge engineer for the Maine State Highway Commission.DesignDesign of the 1,150-foot bridge was complicated by the tides in the area known as Will's Gut. It was decided to build a cobwork bridge, using granite slabs as cribstones, acquired from local quarries in nearby Yarmouth, Maine. The slabs, longer than they are wide, are laid horizontally, first lengthwise, and then crosswise, in several layers. No mortar or cement is used. Granite slabs were considered sufficiently heavy to withstand wind and wave, while the open cribbing allowed the tide to ebb and flow freely without increasing tidal current to any great degree.Some 10,000 tons of granite were used in the project. A concrete road (now part of Route 24) was built on top of the cribstones.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
68 reviews
Google
5.0
TripAdvisor
  • This bridge is an engineering feat. There's something romantic about it, too - the architecture, the setting, the natural beauty around it. Enjoy some great coffee and scones at the Salt Cod Cafe on t...  more »
  • Took the cruise from Portland to Bailey's Isle,eat lunch at Cooks Lobster and Ale House on the island, then return to Portland on the cruise. Great view of bridge from boat.  more »
  • It is well worth your time to visit Bailey Island. It should be noted that what TripAdvisor offers for Things to Do is actually fairly limited. Guess you will have to ask the locals when you get there...  more »
Google
  • This is really very special bridge. The Cribstone construction feels pretty fragile at the first glance, but given the weight of the stones and the construction itself it is safe. Worthwhile checking this out with your own eyes.
  • My favorite place to go when going back home to Maine🙂
  • My Grandfather and Great Uncle helped build this bridge and supplied all the granite blocks from Knight Quarry in Pownal.
  • Beautiful!
  • This is a world-famous bridge. It's said to be the only crib bridge in the world.

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