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Unformatted text preview: Bridges have been around for thousands of years since the times of early Romans carrying people, supplies, animals, and most importantly armies! The different kinds of bridges can be made out of a number of different things including rope, stone, steel, and other strong materials. While some bridges stay around for maybe only a few years or decades before another is built to replace it such as in rope bridges, however some, like those made out of stone, can last many lifetimes and never need to be replaced. Those bridges are few and far between without having major work done on them constantly, such as the golden gate bridge, which has a year round crew taking care of it. Early Romans are credited for building the first arch bridge to cross an obstacle such as a river or deep creek. The first ones being made out of wood as to not offend their gods. It did not take long for them to switch to stone bridges that would last significantly longer than the wooden ones first created. The Romans were so dependent on the bridges for their armies they created a cofferdam. A cofferdam was an enclosure that temporarily kept water away from workmen creating a foundation in the river bed. After the foundation was set the cofferdam could easily be removed and the river would flow as normal around the foundation. 1 The Frankford Bridge was built just outside of what is today Philadelphia in 1697 at the order of William Penn, the man in charge of the territory around the Pennypack River in what is now Pennsylvania. The land that the bridge is built on originally was part of Thomas Holmes's "Well Springs Estate. Holmes was the first person in charge of construction; however he died two years before it could be started. At the time of the order there were no direct ways safe enough to cross the river without taking time to go downstream to find a slow enough part to cross. This could make ones trek days longer, and in certain circumstances a person could not afford to lose days on a trip! After it was built though, a person could travel from New York or Tenton straight to Philadelphia without having to take time to find a safe spot to cross the river. At the time of the construction towns in the American colonies were barely big enough to even be considered towns. With America still being a colony of England it was very hard to develop the towns in order to be prosperous. Everything at the time was still very rural, with just small amount large populated towns. Instead, people lived miles away from the next house with a small town to travel to in order to get supplies and 2...
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- Fall '04