Covered Bridges of Bucks Series – part 3 (Frankenfield)

Location: Cafferty Rd., Tinicum Twp. (Google Map)
Height Limit: 9.5 ft. Width: 12 ft.
Length: 130 ft. Weight Limit: 15 tons

Frankenfield Covered Bridge


This covered bridge was built to allow people, horses and wagons a dry passage across the Tinicum Creek, an area once known for an abundant turtle population, on a common travel route of the day. In the winter time workers would “snow” the bridges for the benefit of uninterrupted sleigh rides.  Historically covered bridges have been called “kissing” or “Wishing” because young couple used the shaded passages to steal a kiss or make a wish before entering a new bridge for the first time.  The bridge was made with a roof to protect the wood and timbers from rotting.  People were not to drive or ride over the bridges faster than a walk (about 3 to 4 miles per hour) and smoking was prohibited.  Ithel Town, an engineer and architect from new Haven, CT, Patented the lattice like design in 1820.  Timbers were held in place by wooden pegs know as “tree nails,” allowing the bridge to be built by less skilled workers.

According to a 1982 publication on covered bridges, the county had recently restored it.  It is in excellent condition with vertical plank siding, gable roof, inside walls in the portal area and cut stone abutments.  In 1984 it was one of thirteen remaining covered bridges in Bucks County of the 26 that had been built. Haupt’s Covered Bridge (Which bears the name of some of Simon Frankenfield’s descendants) was burned in January 1985 to bring the number of covered bridges in the county to 12.  In October 1991 arson destroyed the Scholfield Bridge in Tyler State Park.  hence Bucks county had only 11 covered bridges left in 2000.


Thanks to friend and fellow photographer, Mike Rubillo, for braving the cold to go take pictures! Additional thanks to John C. Frankenfield forthe history. 

The Saga of the (World’s Richest) Trailer Park

While on vacation this week, I decided to share the most unbelievable story of wealth and greed. Oddly, you might not expect that involves a trailer park!  This is the saga of Briny Breezes, Inc. in Palm Beach County, Florida. The trailer park (411 residents as of 2000) has been incorporated into a town since 1963, It is only 1 of 2 trailer parks in Florida incorporated and the only one with beach-front property.

I was staying right across the street at a friend’s Casita in Delray Beach.  I shot some photos (ableit without getting a fine) to give you a feel for the community.


In October 2005, developer Jean Francois Roy, of Ocean Land Investments, made an offer to buy the entire town for $500 million. This would equate to an average of slightly more than $1 million per residential lot. In December 2005, it was announced that 73 percent of the 488 lot owners had voted to hire a lawyer to pursue the sale. Later, Roy raised his offer to $510 million.


Had the sale gone through, it would have meant a huge windfall for each lot owner. Many people paid between $30,000 and $40,000 when they purchased their homes. In comparison, the 2000 census reported $129,000 was the median value of a home in Briny.


A vote to ratify the deal was set for January 10, 2007 and 80 percent of residents approved of the sale, with 97 percent of owners voting. The residents would not receive any compensation until 2009 and the plan was yet to be approved by state and local officials, due to zoning concerns.


However, on July 30, 2007, when the “earnest money” was due to the town, the deal was cancelled by the land developer over a dispute with the town board of directors over how long a period was to be allowed for due diligence.


As a result most of the landowners (median household income $34,583) lost the chance to become millionaires. That said walking around and talking to residents today they all seemed to be very content with a beautiful setting and great sense of community.

Thanks to Wikipedia for verification of the story’s details!