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Locust Creek Covered Bridge, Missouri

Locust Creek Covered Bridge and nearby Barn, Linn County, Missouri

A Photo Essay by Carl Morrison,
October 18, 2011 about 4 pm on a cool, cloudy, rain-threatening, Fall day.

    Locust Creek Covered Bridge, Linn County, Missouri, built in 1868, once housed* the nation's first transcontinental road, Route 8. Today, it is the longest of Missouri's four remaining bridges measuring 151 feet. The bridge was built out of white pine using the Howe-truss system, named for William Howe, who patented the design in 1840. The essential features of the design were its use of vertical iron rods to draw the diagonal wooden members tight against the top and bottom of the bridge. The bridge features arched entrances with ramps sloping away from both ends.


* I don't think the bridged 'housed' Route 8, but rather Route 8 went over the river through the covered bridge.

Locust Creek Covered Bridge
Photos by

Except for a small sign on Hwy. 36, this is the first sign you'll see after you turn off Hwy. 36 onto Danube Dr.

Sign at the parking lot for the Covered Bridge.

The bridge you will cross to enter the island on which the bridge is located.  It is less than a 1/2 mile walk.

View from the pedestrian bridge.

The West entrance, the first sight of the beautifully restored 1868 bridge.  It no longer crosses water.

An informational sign on site.

I stepped inside, set up my tripod, and tried to capture the intricate patterns and skillful construction of the
Howe-truss system bridge using bridge bolts and beams.

View out the east end of the bridge.  The foliage outside tinted the flooring of the bridge green.

I liked the way the light, coming from below the bridge, illuminated the inside of the siding from the bottom, looking like indirect lighting in modern days.

For years these entry boards have provided a young boy with a pocket knife an opportunity to publicly declare his love for his girl.  As he and the girl grew older, and they drove through the bridge in a horse and buggy, they learned why covered bridges were called "Kissing Bridges"

Outside the east entrance to the bridge, I found some mature trees to use as a frame for a photo.  The vehicle tracks in the leaves seemed to lead my eye toward the bridge.

The only water I found in the dry creek bed was in this low spot, but I could not get a good reflection of the bridge in the pool.

The pool did show Mother Nature's way of creating good, rich, soil for raising good stands of corn and soybeans.

Heading back to my car, I just had to take one more shot of this silent sentinel in the woods. 

The only sounds, while I was here, were the russle of the leaves in the treetops and my footsteps as I walked through the bridge.  One's imagination might create the rhythmic sound of a horse and buggy crossing the bridge, the sounds of rippling water passing underneath, or the sounds of a 'barn dance' and 'pitch in supper' which were occasionally held here back in the day.

The Barn on Locust Creek

    Covered Bridges and Barns have always been a favorite photographic subject of mine having been born, not in a barn, but on a farm where we put up hay and milked cows in our barn.  Also, there were 3 covered bridges in my home county in Southern Indiana, so these two photographic subjects have been favorites for years.

    On this day, I was delighted as I headed down the gravel road to the Locust Creek Covered Bridge, because I noticed an old barn that I would be able to photograph when I returned from the covered bridge to the 'hard road.'

    Happy that in the same area I had found both a covered bridge and an old barn to photograph, I headed back to the Depot Inn & Suites. 

Directions from the Depot Inn & Suites, La Plata, MO, to the Locust Creek Covered Bridge.

Digital Copies of the Photos in this Photo Essay are available for $20 for a digital copy suitable for printing up to 11 x 14 inch sized prints. Just write Carl@TrainWeb and describe which photo(s) you are interested in.  Through e-mail we can further discuss the delivery of your digital copy of the image.

Other Photos of various outdoor subjects, including trains, are available at

My Framed Train Photographs and post cards can be viewed and purchased at the

Silver Rails Gallery
109 South Gex Street  La Plata, MO 63549  (660) 956-4157 and at
West Winery
107 Vine Street  Macon, MO 63552  (573) 268-3424

Additionally, next year's "Rail Travel Writing and Photography Workshop" at the Depot Inn & Suites in La Plata, MO, is being planned for Mid-October.  If you have an interest in attending, please e-mail Carl@TrainWeb to be notified when we have decided on the exact date.

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0.    Table of Contents |
1.    Depot Inn & Suites, La Plata, MO |

2.    Amtrak Station, La Plata, MO |
3.    Silver Rails Gallery and Memorial Library |
4.    Chris Guenzler Millionth Mile Lookout at the Depot Inn & Suites |
5.    Amish Country west of La Plata on Hwy. 156 |
6.    Downtown La Plata, Missouri
, Including Santa Fe Espresso, Grandma's Home Cookin', City Hall and other photo ops in town. |
7.    Silver Rails Event Center |
8.    Atlanta, Missouri |
9.    West Winery, Macon, Missouri |
10.  Columbia Star Dinner Train, Columbia, Missouri |
11.  Locust Creek Covered Bridge State Historic Site and Danube Dr. Barn  |