Cedar Creek Bridge

aka: Goodie Creek Bridge

The Cedar Creek Bridge, located on Independence County Road 235 where it crosses Cedar Creek about one and a half miles south of its intersection with Arkansas Highway 14 near Rosie (Independence County), is a stone, closed-spandrel deck arch bridge. It was constructed in 1941 by the Works Progress Administration (WPA), a Depression-era public relief agency.

The road to the site of the Cedar Creek Bridge did not appear on Arkansas maps until 1936, five years before the structure was erected, indicating it was likely the location of a ford. Independence County leaders turned to President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal for funding to improve this and other roads throughout the county during the Great Depression. On January 29, 1940, the county was approved for WPA Project No. 65-1-63-2257, receiving $535,998 for “clearing, grubbing, excavating, grading and surfacing; reconstructing fences; constructing drainage structures; erecting road signs and markers; installing pipe; and performing incidental and appurtenant work.”

The Cedar Creek Bridge, completed in 1941, was built as part of this project. The thirty-foot-long concrete bridge features two modified Gothic arches that each span twelve feet and rise three feet at their crown on either side of a two-foot-thick central pier. The bridge is twenty-six feet wide and covered by a twenty-foot roadway. It includes concrete wing walls to protect the embankments along its approaches. The bridge is covered with locally quarried stone.

“Reinforced concrete bridges were durable, aesthetic and cost effective,” historian Lola Bennett wrote in a report on the Cedar Creek Bridge for the Historic American Engineering Record. “They used readily available materials, could be built by local laborers and required less maintenance than other bridge types….The New Deal Era, in particular, saw a proliferation of stone-faced reinforced concrete bridges, as the Civilian Conservation Corps and Works Progress Administration built aesthetically pleasing structures that were also durable and economical.”

The Cedar Creek Bridge continues to serve the people of Independence County in the twenty-first century. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on May 18, 1995.

For additional information:
Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department. Arkansas Historic Bridge Inventory Review and Evaluation, Vol. II, 1996.

Bennett, Lola. “Cedar Creek Bridge (Goodie Creek Bridge) HAER AR-74.” Arkansas Department of Transportation. https://www.arkansashighways.com/historic_bridge/HAER%20Documents/AR-74_Cedar_Creek_Bridge_(Goodie_Creek_Bridge)(14001).pdf (accessed December 21, 2020).

Story, Ken. “Cedar Creek Bridge.” National Register of Historic Places registration form. On file at Arkansas Historic Preservation Program, Little Rock, Arkansas. Online at http://www.arkansaspreservation.com/National-Register-Listings/PDF/IN0237.nr.pdf (accessed December 21, 2020).

Mark Christ
Central Arkansas Library System


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