Designed by master builder John Weaver, and built in 1836 by area farmers, the Burnside Bridge later became a focal point in the Civil War as the epicenter of the “bloodiest one-day battle in American history”. It was folded into National Park Service holdings as a primary attraction of the Antietam National Battlefield and has been a favorite destination for historians and tourists alike since 1966 when it was finally closed to vehicle traffic. After decades of heavy local traffic, expected wear and tear, and a handful of partial restoration attempts, a more extensive restoration effort became unavoidable after a portion of its wall fell into the Antietam Creek below.
The Witmer Group had the privilege to contribute to this significant historic salvation by repointing abutments, piers, and arch soffits, underpinning existing footings, providing grout infill of pier voids, adding additional support with stainless steel tie rods, and dismantling and re-building parapets and spandrel stone walls. As NPS visitors can attest, the Burnside Bridge restoration project is a shining example of what craftsmanship, preservation expertise, dedication to historic accuracy, and innovative problem-solving can achieve.
Excellence in Construction Pyramid Award Winner
ABC Keystone Chapter
Award of Excellence
I want to say 'thank you' to those original contractors who brought this stone to life and 'thank you' to the modern day craftsmen who saved it.Ranger Keith Snyder, Chief of Resource Education and Visitor Services