Discover the Bridges of Madison County: THE REAL BRIDGES

Posted on January 28th, 2016

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THEY ARE IN THE TITLE of all three incarnations of the story. They are a character in their own right. A focal point and instigator of the action of the novel, film and musical. They are the real bridges of Madison County and they have a rich history.

In the mid-1880s as the population of the Midwest grew and demand for the goods rose, farmers needed a way to get their products to market. In response to this need, counties began to improve rural roads and install bridges. These bridges were most often built using timber. It was quickly realized that timber bridges would rapidly deteriorate if left exposed to the elements and it would be much cheaper to cover the bridges rather than repair them.

Madison County, Iowa, located southwest of Des Moines, once boasted 19 covered bridges. Only six remain today, five of which are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Five of the bridges: Roseman, Holliwell, Cedar, Imes-Cox and Hogback were built between 1870-1880 by Benton Jones.
The Cutler-Donahol was built by Eli-Cox in 1870.

The Roseman Bridge — featured in the love story – is also known as the “haunted bridge.” In 1892 two sheriff’s posses trapped a county jail escapee and it is rumored that the man rose up straight through the roof of the bridge, uttered a wild cry and disappeared. The escapee was never found.

The bridges became nationally known because of the success of Robert James Waller’s novel The Bridges of Madison County. The bridges reached super stardom after the release of the film, in 1995. And according to the website the bridges of Madison County are the number one make out spot in Iowa.

There will be photos of the bridges of Madison County on display at the Music Hall during the run of the show, so make sure you come see the show!!

-DSM Megan


THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY is presented by Dallas Summer Musicals February 2-14, 2016 at Music Hall Fair Park. Tickets are ON SALE NOW!

-Click here for tickets will be this link:

-Click here for details/sneak peek is: