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Casselman River Bridge
1813, Grantsville, Garrett County
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One of the first major bridges on the National Road, the Casselman River Bridge, at 354 feet, was the longest single-span stone arch in the United States when built. Skeptics were sure it would collapse when the supports were removed, but the 80-foot-long arch proved equal to the tidal wave of stagecoaches and cargo wagons that poured over it, carrying goods and people from Cumberland to the western frontier. Today the National Historic Landmark bridge is a pedestrian crossing in a state park. From the bridge one can see the march of progress: a 1930s metal truss on US 40, which supplanted the 1813 stone arch, and a modern steel-beam bridge, which carries IS 68 and the bulk of traffic in far western Maryland.

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Revised: June 18, 2008