NoD: Simon Kenton Bridge

Maysville, KY
Simon Kenton Bridge; Maysville, Ky.

The Simon Kenton Bridge spans the Ohio River between Maysville, Ky. and Aberdeen, Ohio (the picture above was actually taken in Aberdeen). The bridge opened on Thanksgiving Eve, 1931. Until that time, ferries were used (photo) to transport people across the Ohio (vehicular traffic had to go through either Newport, Ky. to the west or Portsmouth, Ohio to the east).

The first ferry authorized in Maysville (f/k/a Limestone) was in 1794 to Benjamin Sutton for whom Maysville’s Sutton Street is named after. But with the completion of the Simon Kenton Bridge, the ferries came to an end.

You may recall that Limestone was once part of Bourbon County and leaders from this region, including the namesake of this bridge (Simon Kenton), traveled to Paris to conduct county business. In 1777, Kenton saved the life of Daniel Boone and Kenton County is named after him. Born in Virginia and making his mark in Kentucky, Kenton ultimately settled and died in Ohio.

When this silver-painted suspension bridge opened, 15,000 people turned out. Four high school bands and the University of Kentucky Marching Band all performed to celebrate the opening of the 3,163 foot bridge. [*] Designed by a Harrisburg, Penn. firm, the superstructure was completed by the famous J.A. Roebling Company which had years before designed the Roebling Bridge in Covington (as a design model for its more famous Brooklyn Bridge). In 1945, the tolls were removed and the bridge became toll-free.