Over the river and through the woods

Railroad bridge over the Passaic River, Chatham and Summit

I am not 100% sure how old this railroad bridge over the Passaic River is, but I’d guess late 1830s, since this branch of the Morris & Essex railroad was completed in 1838.

Because of all the trees, it’s hard to get a clear shot of the bridge nowadays, but the “enduring town landmark” (Cunningham 1997, 34) has long been a popular subject for local photographers:

Chatham-Summit railroad bridge, c. 1900

c. 1900


Chatham-Summit railroad bridge, c. 1916

c. 1916


Chatham-Summit railroad bridge, date unknown

Date unknown, probably c.1950-1990



Cunningham, J.T. (1997). Images of America: Chatham. Arcadia Publishing: Dover, NH. ISBN 0738545619.

Treese, L. (2006). Railroads of New Jersey: Fragments of the Past in the Garden State Landscape. Stackpole Books: Mechanicsburg, PA. ISBN 0811732606.

(Submitted to Sunday Bridges.)


8 Responses to “Over the river and through the woods”

  1. You’ve captured some beautiful light and I love the contrast of the modern colorful train engine and the old brick bridge. Wouldn’t have been the same if it wasn’t the engine, but cars. Lovely.

  2. Wow, I love this shot! Will you consider entering it in my ‘Weekly Top Shot’ meme? We’re on Week #16 and I’d love to see you share with me and my readers! Here’s this weeks’ link: http://www.theviewfromrighthere.com/blog/?p=6115

  3. Quite the contrast of old vs. new. Great shot!

  4. It always surprises me how difficult it can now be to date quite large structures from our rail and industrial heritage. I prefer trees to street furniture like signs and lamps.

  5. Belatedly, «Louis» thanks you for this fine contribution to Sunday Bridges.


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