Franklin, New Hampshire


One-half mile east of Franklin Falls and south of U.S. Route 3 over the Winnipesaukee River on the Boston and Maine Railroad line.
Style of Bridge:
Pratt truss
Year of Construction:
Original Cost:
Structural Characteristics:
The truss is 180'0" long with clear spans of 52'6", 65'6" and 58'0". The west approach is 31' long and east approach is 23' long. This results in an overall length of 231'0". The deck is timber and the rails rest on top of the trusses. This section of rail line has been abandoned.
Maintained By:
New Hampshire Department of Transportation
World Guide Number:
New Hampshire Number:

bridge             bridge

Historical Remarks:
The existing structure replaced a framed trestle bridge erected here in 1891 or 1892 by the Franklin and Tilton Railroad. This unusual bridge, built by the Bridge and Building Department of the Boston and Maine Railroad in 1896, appears to be the only deck-covered railroad bridge left in the United States. It was named Sulphite because of the large amounts of sulfur transported over the rail lines for use by the giant pulp and paper mills not far from the bridge. It is also known as the Upside Down Covered Bridge because the railroad track crosses over the top of the structure rather than running through its center. Service over the line was suspended in 1973. The bridge sides are boarded over with 7/8" siding and the ends are closed. There was a fire inside the bridge on October 27, 1980 that is believed to have been arson. Replacement costs could run as high as $500,000. The Sulphite Bridge is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

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Table of Contents

New Hampshire Bridges

New Hampshire Covered Bridges
Compiled and edited by
Richard G. Marshall
Chief System Planning
New Hampshire Department of Transportation
Color photographs by Arthur F. Rounds