Skip to main content

Turnpike and Bridge Authority photographs, scrapbooks and drawings, c. 1929-2000, bulk: 1966-2000

 Sub-Series — Multiple Containers
Identifier: 2001-35
Mount Hope Bridge construction, opening and maintenance photographs
Mount Hope Bridge construction, opening and maintenance photographs
Newport (Pell) Bridge photographs and plans
Newport (Pell) Bridge photographs and plans

Scope and Contents

The Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority photographs, scrapbooks and drawings consist of a wealth of photographs documenting the building of the Newport Bridge, maintenance projects of the Mount Hope Bridge, newspaper clippings documenting the Mount Hope Bridge’s deck project, reproductions of the plans for the Mount Hope Bridge information kiosk, plans and elevation information related to the Newport/Pell Bridge, 2000 and photographs and ephemera documenting the 1929 Mount Hope Bridge opening ceremonies.

Dates

  • c. 1929-2000
  • Majority of material found within 1966-2000

Language of Materials

English

Conditions Governing Access

No special restriction unless otherwise specified.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright is in the public domain unless otherwise specified. We reserve the right to restrict reproduction of materials due to preservation concerns.

Biographical / Historical

The Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority was created in 1954 (P.L. 3390) by the Rhode Island General Assembly as a corporate body with authority to construct, acquire, maintain and operate bridge projects as defined by law. The Authority was created in order to “facilitate vehicular traffic … alleviate barriers caused by large bodies of water and promote the agriculture and industrial development of the state.” (PL. 3390 Sec. 3) In 1963, Public Law chapter 165 amended Title 24, Chapter 12 to dissolve the Mount Hope Bridge Authority and Jamestown Bridge Commission whose authorities and powers were transferred to the Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority. The Authority was responsible for the Construction of the Pell (formerly Newport) Bridge that opened to traffic June 28, 1969.
The Authority is responsible for the operation and maintenance of the Pell Bridge between Jamestown and Newport, and the Mount Hope Bridge between Portsmouth and Bristol. The Authority consists of five (5) members, including the Director of the Department of Transportation who is a member ex-officio and four (4) members appointed by the Governor for four (4) year terms. The construction of the Mount Hope Bridge began December 16, 1927 and was opened to traffic October 24, 1929. The Bridge is a wire cable suspension type with steel viaduct approaches. The total length of the bridge is 6,130 feet with the height of the main towers above the water being 285 feet. With a main span of 1200 feet, the Mount Hope Bridge was once the longest suspension span bridge in New England. (Information Tablet, Kiosk Plan, 2000).

Extent

5.3 Linear Feet (5 containers)

Abstract

The Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority was created in 1954 by the Rhode Island General Assembly as a corporate body with authority to construct, acquire, maintain and operate bridge projects as defined by law. The collection consists of photographs, news clippings, plan drawings and related ephemera documenting building, opening and maintenance of both the Newport Bridge and the Mount Hope Bridge.

Arrangement

The records arranged as follows:

Series 1. Photographs

Series 2. Clippings

Series 3. Drawings

Custodial History

All photographs created by or for the Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority excepting photographs relating to the Opening of the Mount Hope Bridge. Those items were presumably in the custody of the Mount Hope Toll Bridge Commission (created 1925 PL 673), transferred to the Mount Hope Bridge Authority (created 1954 PL 3391) and subsequently transferred to the custody of the Authority in 1963.

This particular archive of photographs was lent to the Rhode Island Historical Society and the Rhode Island Historic Preservation Commission for temporary exhibit use sometime before Kenneth Bianchi took over as Director in 2000. The archive was also lent to a private advertising agency, Cote & D’Ambrosio, for use before the deposit of the photographs at the State Archives in April 2001

Accruals

No accruals are anticipated at this time.

Inventory

Series 1. Photographs
Container: Box 1-3


Subseries 1. Photographs - Newport Bridge - Progress Photos, 1966-1967
Scope: Progress photographs detail the building of the Newport Bridge, 1966-1967 - 8x10 black and white photographs mounted on linen. Includes extensive annotations. Arranged by date and contract number. Photographs numbered.
Container: Box 1/ Folder 1-50
Subseries 2. Photographs - Newport Bridge - Progress Photos, 1968-1969
Scope: Progress photographs detail the building of the Newport Bridge, 1968-1969 - 8x10 black and white photographs mounted on linen. Includes extensive annotations. Arranged by date and contract number. Photographs numbered.
Container: Box 2/ Folder 1-45
Subseries 3. Photographs - Mount Hope Bridge Maintenance Report, 1987
Scope: Consists of 20 photographs originally stored in adhesive photo albums with annotations. Preservation photocopies made of photo album annotations and foldered with original photographs.
Container: Box 3/Folder 1-5
Subseries 4. Photographs - Mount Hope Bridge - Projects, 1983/1986
Scope: Consists of photographs originally stored in adhesive photo albums with annotations. Preservation photocopies made of photo album annotations and foldered with original photographs.
Container: Box 3/ Folder 6-58
Subseries 5. Photographs - Mount Hope Bridge - Maintenance, circa 1990
Scope: Consists of two photo albums. Minimal descriptions. One album of photographs has ink citations noting roll and picture number.
Container: Box 3/Folder 59-60
Subseries 6. Photographs - Opening Mount Hope Bridge, 1929
Scope: Opening of the Mount Hope Bridge, October 24, 1929 - 8x10 black and white photographs by Acme, framed by Hutchinson’s Art Shop, Fall River, MA.
Container: Box 5/Folder 1-7
Item 1. and 2. Opening of the Mount Hope Bridge between Bristol and Portsmouth, Rhode Island.
Scope: At the dedication exercises photo shows - left to right- Chief Crazt [Crazy?] Bull, Governor Norman Case, Senator William Vanderbilt of R.I. as the Indians presented birch bark scrolls.
Container: Box 5/Folder 1-2
Item 3. Dignitaries and representatives of the Algonquin and Wampanoag tribes cross the bridge.
Container 5/Folder 3
Item 4. Representatives of the Armed Forces and Algonquin and Wampanoag tribes cross the bridge.
Container 5/Folder 4
Item 5. Dignitaries, Algonquin and Wampanoag Indians and military personnel cross the bridge (long view).
Container: Box 5/Folder 5
Item 6. Female members of the Algonquin and Wampanoag tribes cross the bridge.
Container: Box 5/Folder 6
Item 7. Dedication exercises invitation, framed (9 1/4 x 14 1/2).
Container: Box 5/Folder 7


Series 2. Scrapbooks
Container: Box 4
Subseries 1. Scrapbooks - Clippings: News Media - General, 1985-1986
Scope: Mount Hope Bridge- preservation photocopies of original scrapbook. Container: Box 4/Folder 1
Subseries 2. Scrapbooks - Clippings: News Media - Deck Project, 1985-1986
Scope: Preservation photocopies of original scrapbook documenting the closing and repairs to the Mount Hope Bridge for the deck project.
Container: Box 4/Folder 2


Series 3. Drawings, 2000
Subseries 1. Drawings - Highway Safety Improvements: Mount Hope Bridge, 2000
Scope: Consists of drawings of the the Highway Safety Improvements, 2000 of the Mount Hope Bridge to Old Ferry Road in Bristol. Includes preliminary Kiosk sketch for the Mount Hope Bridge Highway safety improvements of Route 114 Ferry Road. Shows from elevation and kiosk details. Also includes information tablets (for kiosk) regarding the Kings Philip Trail, Construction of the Bridge and the Grand Opening (October 24, 1929) - photocopy 22x36.
Container: Oversize 1
Subseries 2. Drawings- Newport/Pell Bridge Plan and Elevation, March 2000
Scope: Newport/Pell Bridge Plan and Elevation, March 2000 - 11x14 photocopy of drawing of plan and elevation of the Newport/Pell Bridge East passage Narragansett Bay. Container: Oversize 2

Repository Details

Part of the Rhode Island State Archives Repository

Contact:
33 Broad Street
Providence RI 02903 USA
401-222-2353