Parke County, Indiana
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Phillips Covered Bridge (#22)


Built: 1909
Builder: Joseph A. Britton
Creek: Big Pond Creek (also called Rocky Run)
Location: Located 5 miles west of Rockville, south of US 36, and 1 1/2 mile southwest of Coloma.
Reference Code: #22, 14-61-12, 12-61-13, ea, Wabash 5-15N—8W
Size: 43 ft long +9’ +9’, 16 ft wide, 14’ clearance
Truss: Multiple king posts (no arch) 1 span
Foundation: Concrete

Repair/Restoration History: Reroofed, resided, and repainted in 1991 for $7,000.

Bridge History: Also known as "Arabia Bridge"

Little Arabia was an area on top of the hill bordered by Big Pond, Leatherwood, and Big Raccoon Creeks. The name may have come from Syrian Moslem immigrants who settled nearby or as a term of derision for residents who were thought of as little more than cattle thieves.

The Arabia Church was built on the hill above the covered bridge. The adjacent Arabia Cemetery remains but the church is now only a step, foundation, and shards of stained glass. Many of the headstones are inscribed "Phillips", indicating that the Philips family were prominent residents near the bridge.

The Phillips Bridge shared its heritage with the Weisner Bridge, also built by J. A. Britton, in the previous year. Both bridges had a four segment King Post truss (Burr Arch without an arch). The Weisner Bridge was the shortest county owned bridge until it was washed away in 1957. Now, the Phillips Covered Bridge is the shortest Parke County Covered Bridge.

The west, downstream truss has been reinforced with an iron beam, but the Phillips Bridge is still in use.


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