The Theodore Burr Covered Bridge Society of Pennsylvania, Inc.

Monthly Business Meeting

Saint Paul’s Episcopal Church, Manheim, PA

Sunday, April 7, 2019, 2:00 p.m.


President Tom Walczak called the meeting to order at 2:10 p.m. and lead us in the pledge of allegiance

He reminded everyone of today’s bake sale and thanked all who participated by baking or buying.


NEW MEMBERS AND GUESTS:  Member John Hedges, a life member from Reedsport, Oregon, was at today’s meeting. 


APPROVAL OF MINUTES – Tom reminded everyone the minutes were available for review and he will ask for approval later in the meeting.


TREASURER’S REPORT:  Bob Kuether announced new member White Covered Bridge Association.

We have 376 members renewed for 2018-19, 12 less than 1 year ago.  Treasurer’s report was approved and will be filed for audit.



Joe McCarthy thanked Fred Moll for a great mini-safari through Berks County yesterday.  The group ended up at Dreibelbis where Joe’s company is going to be working on it.  The bridge will be taken down and refurbished.  They will fill in ½ the river to work on the bridge, quite an undertaking.  They plan to have a viewing area where it will be safe to watch the progress and take pictures.  Work starts Monday.  Joe plans to attend the Blenheim Bridge dedication on June 29 at 11:00.  His company also worked on Blenheim.

Connie McLaughlin mentioned that the Star Barn grounds are stunning and the owner gives a lot of money to charities.  She and Tim plan to see all 210 PA bridges during this our 60th anniversary year.

Pat Cook visited Dellville Bridge.  The wind had blown off tar paper from half of the roof.  She mentioned the Star Barn event on April 22-23.  They will have a re-enactment of Lincoln’s Funeral Train passing by the newly built half of Herr’s Mill Bridge. 

Greg Williams was in Adams County and saw Heikes and Sachs bridges – both look good.  He mentioned that Channel 8 ran a segment on Lancaster County Bridges.

John Bechtel visited Blenheim Bridge yesterday with an Amish family.  They were flabbergasted at the size of the bridge.

Clyde Scheib reported the luminaries event at Kennedy Bridge was a big success!



President Tom Walczak and Tim Cohen visited Eshelman’s which was in good shape.  He also visited McConnell’s Mill (looking good) and Diehl Turners which is showing some age and could use painting.  Tom has been busy with society business for SPCBW.  He requested a photo op with the Governor to sign our proclamation (no word yet on that), completed the SPCBW poster which will be emailed out to those who need it.  It will not be printed and appear in WCS.



First Vice President Jim Smedley and Gloria visited a few PA bridges since the start of the year including Sachs, Neff’s Mill, Lime Valley, Jackson’s Sawmill, White Rock Forge, Pine Grove and Thomas Mill.  All of these bridges were in very good condition. They also saw the 5 bridges in Berks County yesterday during the mini safari.  In January, Bob Kuether and Jim stopped by Dellville, Ft. Hunter and about 10 bridges in Columbia County in preparation for the upcoming June safari.

The 2020 calendar photos have been submitted to DavCo for printing.  We should have the calendars available at the May Dinner.  Over 200 photos were submitted this year by 16 photographers.  Most of the top rated photos were taken by Richard Zitrick, Gloria Smedley and Doug Turner.  Six of the photos in the calendar have never been in a previous calendar: Cogan House, Erb’s, Fleisher’s,  Bailey,  Schlicher’s and Lairdsville.  Jim thanked everyone who submitted photos, the judges and everyone who will support our society by purchasing a calendar.

Today is the deadline for the combination safari and anniversary T shirt.  Order forms are available on the front table.  If members don’t have their check book or cash with them, Jim will still take the order and wait for the check in the mail.

The deadline for PA Crossings is the Sunday of our Columbia County Safari, June 2nd.


Second Vice President Ray Finkelstein was not present. He is recuperating from back surgery but sends his regards.


Third Vice President Steve Wolfhope was in western PA in January and stopped at Claycomb.  In February he and Gloria visited Skippack Village non-authentic bridge.  In March he visited Poole Forge and went on the mini-safari to Thomas Mill bridge lead by Michael Chorazy.  He took a road trip to test out his new car and visited 5 bridges in Chester County then 8 bridges in Lancaster County the next week.  He attended the mini-safari yesterday in Berks County and visited Shearer’s today.  Shearer’s is missing a few boards and in need of repair.


Fourth Vice President Tim McLaughlin saw ‘many’ bridges since our last meeting.  He and Connie plan to see all the PA bridges in this 60th anniversary year.  A few he noted were Linton Stevens (damage downstream side), Glen Hope (a lot of work done there, looks good), Neff’s Mill (appears to be about 80% new wood), Bitzers (lots of graffiti).  He attended yesterday’s mini safari through Berks County and noted the park at Twining Ford in Bucks County is now open.


Treasurer Bob Kuether thanked Michael Chorazy and Fred Moll for leading our first 2 mini-safaris.  There were over 20 people at each one.  He reminded everyone of the big safari in Columbia County and future mini-safaris coming up.


Historian Fred Moll led the mini-safari through Berks County yesterday (5 bridges).  He thanked all who attended.


Corresponding Secretary Pam Heisey: No report.


Recording Secretary Gloria Smedley:  No report.


ILLNESSES/DEATHS of MEMBERS:  Ray Finkelstein is recuperating from back surgery. Pat Cook thanked everyone for the many cards she received upon he mother’s passing.


OLD BUSINESS:  Judy Kuether presented the 60th Anniversary Quilt.  The drawing for this will be at our Anniversary Dinner on May 4th.  Pam Mailey mentioned the black and white McConnell’s Mill Bridge picture that is being raffled off also at the dinner.  Dawn Ekdahl of Poole Forge Historical Society is looking for engineers to talk about doing repairs and needs a liaison for the project.


NEW BUSINESS:   Pam Mailey announced the country store will be going to a flea market at the location of the old Darrenkamp’s grocery store on April 27 (rain date April 28).  On May 8 at 6:30pm, Bob Kuether will make a presentation at the Red Land library on covered bridges.


Jim presented the first 10 proposed changes to our bylaws to the membership.    All were reviewed and approved.  He will review the remainder of the changes at the August meeting.


NEW COVERED BRIDGE ITEMS:  Greg Williams shared plates and other miscellaneous covered bridge items he found.  Pam Mailey shared two articles about covered bridges and some pictures


APPROVAL OF MINUTES – December minutes were approved as presented.

ADJOURNMENT - The meeting was adjourned at 3:26 p.m. followed by the movie “Operation Bridge Rescue.”

NEXT MEETING - Our Next Meeting will be held at Shady Maple Smorgasbord on May 4th starting at 9:30 a.m. for our 60th Anniversary Dinner.


Respectfully Submitted, Gloria Smedley, Recording Secretary

April 30, 2019