Woodward's Bridge and the Taunton River between Middleborough
and Bridgewater, MA, photograph, early 20th century.
On Monday, the Summer Street bridge over the Taunton River between Middleborough and Bridgewater is scheduled to be closed in order to permit its replacement. Historically, a succession of bridges have been situated over the Taunton River here, all known since at least the early 1800s as Woodward's or Woodard's Bridge. While the earliest bridge was undoubtedly a wooden or stone slab bridge, the bridge which spanned the river during the 19th and early 20th centuries [pictured above] was an iron truss bridge with a wooden deck and prominent stone piers on either side of the river. By the early 1900s, this iron bridge had fallen into some disrepair with the deck being replanked in 1911. Ultimately, in 1924, the present steel and concrete bridge was constructed. This summer, this bridge too will be replaced.