Arson Destroys 144-year-old Covered Wooden Bridge

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KEENE TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) -- Authorities in rural western Michigan say an arson fire has destroyed a historic covered wooden bridge that has spanned the Flat River since the 19th century.

The Ionia County sheriff's department says the fire was reported about 5:10 a.m. Sunday on Whites Bridge It was built in 1869 in Keene Township, about 15 miles east of Grand Rapids.

There's no immediate report on suspects.

Neighbor Grant Young tells that he saw the bridge burning at 3 a.m. but "didn't bother calling" because he assumed someone else already had reported it.

The bridge is one of the oldest such structures in Michigan.

A historic marker says the bridge had hand-hewn trusses covered with rough pine boards, held together with wooden pegs and hand-cut square iron nails.

Photos Courtesy of Wood TV.

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