|The Portville Historical and Preservation Society
|17 Maple Avenue
Portville, New York
The lovely watercolor
in our toolbar above is
a depiction of the office
at 17 Maple Avenue.
The artist is Portville's
very own talent,
Covered Bridge for Portville
Portville: 176 Years Old and Counting ...
Last summer (2012) commemorated the 175th
anniversary of Portville becoming a town with a
week-long celebration in August. It was a lot of work
for everyone involved but it was fun and memorable
and would not have happened without the dedication of
the organizer, Mr. Chuck Lucas, and his committee.
This year, Chuck is working on a new project, a
wooden covered bridge for Portville. It has always
been a dream of his to build this bridge and he chose
the Dodge Street bridge between Temple Street and
Upper Brooklyn St/Route 305 near his home. He has
spent countless hours with the officials of Portville
Village and Cattaraugus County to design and obtain
approvals for this unique bridge.
To help draw interest and generate funding for his
project, Chuck enlisted local artist Helen Worth to come
up with a rendering of his vision. Her watercolor is a
lovely fall scene, showing the bridge spanning the
creek, as illustrated below on one of her cards.
This page was last updated on 02/26/2015
A Covered Bridge in Portville's Past?
We are always finding out new and interesting things about Portville. This summer (2013), we
discovered that Portville really did have a covered bridge and we have Anne Sutter to thank for it! As
luck would have it, we happened to be over at the library one Thursday, assisting a researcher from
out of town, when Anne was mentioning some tintypes she had brought with her. When she said
they were of the Peckham family, we became VERY interested. By coincidence, we were
researching the Peckhams for our next newsletter.
Anne explained that she and her siblings had received a number of these photographs that had been
given to their mother, Ruth Wilson, by Roy Peckham. She brought her old photos to the office with a
stack of old post cards. We had a hard time containing our enthusiasm over one post card in
particular. On the back of the card was written "B. TenEyck" and "Old Toll Gate Bridge". Bessie and
Ernie TenEyck have been gone a long time, but they lived at the end of Pine Street for many years,
right next to the old burying grounds of the Pine Street Cemetery and the bank of the Oswayo Creek.
The dykes have filled in a lot of the area behind their house but the post card illustrates the incredible
width of the creek in the old days and the only covered bridge we have ever seen in Portville. As to
the date of the photograph, it must have been taken before 1915, which is the date of an article we
found in the Portville Review describing the "new bridge". Thanks Anne!
You can contact Chuck to get your own 8 x 12 matted print or set of 6 note cards. Stop by the
historical society (starting in May) to save postage. We have numbered prints selling for $25 and $15
for a pack of the cards. This project needs your support so please make a donation today!
Chuck Lucas pitching his
Covered Bridge Project at
the Alumni Banquet
Front of Post Card
Back of Post Card
This article appeared in
the Portville Review on
October 14, 1915