Bridge Tender's House


About the exhibit

Donated to the Museum in 1989 by Johnson Construction Company of Minneapolis, Minnesota, the general contractor who replaced the old wooden trestle over Escambia Bay west of Milton with a precast concrete bridge. The house provided shelter for the men who tended the draw bridge and their families. This is the third known house to be built on the bridge with the last two previous houses destroyed by hurricanes in 1906 and 1926. The one lost in the 1906 hurricane claimed the lives of the bridge tender’s wife and two children who were caught on the bridge and tried to ride out the storm. The house is now the home of the West Florida Model Railroad Club, a division of the Museum. Its HO scale layout depicts northwest Florida railroads, with an operating diorama of the Milton railroad scene (circa 1950).