On our way to the Forbidden Caverns, we passed a sign reading "Harrisburg Covered Bridge (1875)", so we decided to take a short detour to see the bridge. So glad we did - it was lovely! We were positioning our tripod to get a photo when the owner of the house just beside it started talking to us. He offered to let us onto his property to get a good shot (we would never have trespassed without permission).
The original bridge was destroyed on February 25, 1875 during a great flood in Sevier County. Elbert Stephenson Early, a resident of Harrisburg, rebuilt the Harrisburg Covered Bridge later in 1875. This is the only surviving covered bridge in Sevier County and is still being used for both foot traffic and vehicles. The bridge is 83 feet long and 14 feet wide with 11.5 feet clearance inside. In 1969, the bridge was in need of repair and restoration. The Spencer Clark Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) stepped in and financed the restoration of the bridge in 1972. The Harrisburg Covered Bridge has been listed in the National Register of Historic Places since 1975
We got lost and happened upon this cool little store called The Dam Store. It was so neat!! The people working there were the best! They let us use the phone and were more than helpful and patient with us. We didn't even know we were near the dam, we were just trying to get out of the traffic on the main road. After the lady told us about the dam and marina we rode out there and it was so beautiful, even though we were told the lake wasn't as nice as usual because they haven't had much rain. In the fall this is were we will be coming back to camp. I will also be stopping back at The Dam Store for some more good home cookin and more t-shirts. I bought one when I was there and wish I would have gotten an extra, I get comments everywhere I go when I wear it.
The caverns are located in Townsend TN off of Highway 321. This cave is awesome! There is a waterfall inside the cave, there is an area known as the beach. There are many great features to this cave, it is definitely worth taking time out to go visit.
Douglas Dam is 202 feet high and stretches 1,705 feet across the French Broad River. The dam is regularly opened and closed to regulate the water levels. It is a great place to visit to go fishing. There is a campground and a little store. Above the dam, there are picnic areas with a great view of the Smoky Mountains.
This place is a bird-watchers paradise. There are several species of waterbirds who fish in the water.
From exit 407 on I-40 travel towards Sevierville, turn Left on Douglas Dam Road, follow the road around to 338. Then look for the signs for TVA Douglas Dam
The Harrisburg Covered Bridge is the only remaining old covered bridge in Sevier County, and one of only six left in Tennessee. In my opinion it is also the prettiest. The 64' Queen Truss structure was built in 1875 by Elpert Stephenson Early, so local folks could get across the East Fork of the LIttle Pigeon River to his grist mill.
The bridge was restored in 1972 by the joint effort of the Great Smoky Chapter and the Spencer Clark Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution. In 2005 the bridge was restored again to it's present condition, and a small parking lot was put in beside it by the Sevier County Road Department. The bridge is still open to vehicular traffic.
To find the Harrisburg Covered Bridge take US Hwy. 411 north of Sevierville for about 5 miles, turn east onto TN-339 and go about one more mile. You will see a sign pointing to the bridge, which is on a local road, about 400 yards south of the highway.