The Theodore Burr Covered Bridge Society of Pennsylvania, Inc.

Monthly Business Meeting - Historic Poole Forge

Sunday, September 11, 2022 at 1:00pm


Vice-President Jim Smedley called the meeting to order at 1:00pm after our annual picnic at Historic Poole Forge Park and Mansion (the picnic was held inside the mansion due to rainy weather). He welcomed everyone and led the Pledge of Allegiance.  There was also a moment of silence in remembrance of 9/11. Jim thanked Tim and Connie McLaughlin for leading the Bucks County Safari.




APPROVAL OF MINUTES: Jim Smedley reminded all the August Meeting Minutes are available for review; he will ask for approval later in the meeting.  Thank you to Gloria Smedley for preparing the minutes in Pam Mailey’s absence.


TREASURER’S REPORT:  None. Judy Kuether will report on two months activity at October’s meeting.



Greg Williams – Greg viewed a train video and saw the double-barreled covered bridge (Roberts) in Eaton, OH.


Pat Cook – Pat and Ken traveled to Michigan; they saw a small covered bridge while at the casino and Frankenmuth Covered Bridge lit-up, after dark.


Connie McLaughlin – Pictures of a 30 year old, walking from Washington to Maine, were posted on Facebook showing his stop at the Valley Forge Covered Bridge (Knox).


Tim McLaughlin – Tim had a grand time leading the Safari; thanks to all who attended.



President Bob Kuether – Not present. Jim Smedley reported Bob fell yesterday and is in the hospital with 30 stitches to his head and face.


First Vice-President Jim Smedley – Jim and Gloria attended the Safari to Bucks County on August 20-21st. Tim and Connie McLaughlin did an excellent job. Connie designed the shirts and had them printed; she also designed the Safari patch.  Jim and Gloria attended the Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony for Hassenplug Bridge on August 24th. About 40 people were in attendance including 8 from our society. They talked to a lead contact about applying No-Char to the inside of the bridge.  They also stopped by Hollingshead Bridge in Columbia County to see the damage from an oversized vehicle. The truck took out all the roof braces on one side of the bridge and kept going.


Second Vice-President Ray Finkelstein – Ray is trying to get an update on Geiger’s Bridge; still no roof on it, but has some kind of siding on.  He also hasn’t heard anything on rehabilitation of Bogert’s Bridge.

Third Vice-President Frank Mailey – Frank and Pam attended the Bucks County Safari in August. They also attended the re-dedication of Hassenplug Bridge which was very nice.  They visited Millmont Red Bridge which still leans and Aline Bridge which needs painted.

Fourth Vice-President Tony Abramo – Tony and Karen attended the Bucks County Safari.  They also stopped to see Pleasantville and Greisemer’s Mill Bridges (Greisemer’s needs painted).


Recording Secretary Pam Mailey – Pam shared the handout from the re-dedication and ribbon cutting ceremony for Hassenplug Covered Bridge.  Pam viewed a show on PBS-TV showing tours of Columbia County Covered Bridges and advertising the Bloomsburg Covered Bridge Arts and Crafts Festival.


Corresponding Secretary Pam Heisey – Not present.


Treasurer Judy Kuether – Not present.


Historian Fred Moll – Fred walked through and photographed the Dreibelbis Covered Bridge.

This bridge still looks great as the day Joe McCarthy finished the rehabilitation of the bridge. He also drove through the Pleasantville Covered Bridge just to check that the headache bars were still standing

and they were.  On September 1st, Fred gave a PowerPoint program on covered bridges of Berks County to the Fellowship Association of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Amityville, including many extra

photos of the bridges that were once in their area. The program was well attended with many

questions asked about covered bridges.


NEWSLETTER EDITORS:  Jim Smedley reported the deadline for the Fall PA Crossings Newsletter is Sunday, October 2nd.  Members should receive their copy around October 10th-15th.  Connie McLaughlin will prepare an article about the Safari for the Newsletter; Jim will include the group photo. She will also contact Ray Finkelstein about a safari article for Wooden Covered Spans.


ILLNESS/DEATH of MEMBER(S):  (1) Joe Calabrese will undergo kidney surgery on September 16th, after battling cancer for a few months. (2) Heather Watkins has been diagnosed with colon cancer after a routine colonoscopy.  She will have surgery on October 6th, hoping no further treatment is needed.

(3) Linda Finkelstein is having parathyroid surgery on October 4th. (4) Tom Walczak is not doing well, recurring infection. (5) Steve and Gloria Wolfhope are doing well after their car accident in July; he is no longer wearing the neck brace and they have a new car.



(1) Gloria Smedley has 2023 calendars for sale; she is also selling them on Ebay.


(2) Jim Smedley shared the suggested locations for the 2023 Safari: Iowa (Madison County), Vermont (Jim and Gloria will check this out on their trip in October), Washington-Greene County (was 2002 Safari).  Also suggested was W. Virginia bridges (was 2011 Safari).


(3) The recording of the Pledge of Allegiance at the covered bridge for ABC 27 News (lunchtime segment), will be postponed due to the inclement weather today.



(1) Jim Smedley asked if there was a preference to having the annual picnic on Saturday vs. Sunday.  Majority did not have a preference.


(2) Jim Smedley reminded the group that yearly dues for 2022-2023 are due to Judy Kuether by September 30th.  You can give payments to Gloria Smedley today.


(3) Pam Mailey reminded the Officers that per our Constitution and Bylaws, Officers must submit a yearly report for the members review; these are due to Pam by our October Meeting.


(4) The Bloomsburg Covered Bridge Arts and Crafts Festival is October 6-9, 2022.  We need helpers, especially for set-up and tear-down. Contact Judy Kuether or talk to Pam Mailey today.


(5) Pam Mailey will present a power-point program on Covered Bridges to the Red Land Women’s Club on Monday, October 17th at 7:30pm, Red Land Community Library, Newberry Commons, Goldsboro.


(6) The Officers will hold an Executive Board Meeting on Saturday, November 5th.  Time/location TBD.


(7) Our November 6th meeting will include a bake sale (wrap items separately); also bring donations for the church’s food pantry. Program will be “PA Haunted Covered Bridges”.


(8) Pam Mailey will present a program on “PA Haunted Covered Bridges” on Monday, November 7th at Red Land Community Library.


(9) Gloria Smedley said the National Safari to Georgia was cancelled.  There is a 1 day event scheduled for 9/24 in Vermont.


(10) Dave Evans asked about decorating at Poole Forge; it is scheduled for Saturday, November 19th.



(1) Carol Wright saw a TV commercial to visit Bucks County; it  included covered bridge pictures.


(2) Dave Evans visited the Boyertown Museum of Antique Vehicles that had a hand-carved, 8 foot long covered bridge model.


(3) Pam Mailey shared a Harrisburg Patriot News Article (August 7th) about the previous Camelback Bridge; included note of Charles Dickens crossing the bridge by stagecoach in 1842.


(4) Gloria Smedley shared the recently published book by the National Society “A Beginner’s Guide to Covered Bridges”.  The picture on the cover is of Sachs Covered Bridge. They are giving us 100 free copies to share with new members; can also download the publication.  Tony Abramo shared that he printed this publication; it is well written and has good photography.


(5) Tony Abramo is considering 1 or 2 one-day safaris for 2023.


NEXT MEETING: Sunday, October 2nd at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Columbia, PA.   The Program will be “Our Society’s Year in Review” by President Bob Kuether.


APPROVAL OF MINUTES: The August 2022 minutes were approved as presented.

ADJOURNMENT: The meeting was adjourned at 2:15pm.


Respectfully Submitted by Pam Mailey, Recording Secretary, September 26, 2022