In 2013 I talked with Carol and Margaret Croft, who lived on the Carol Croft Road off of S.R. 723. Mr. Croft has since passed away, but I'll always be grateful to him for sharing his memories with me.
They also shared this wonderful one-of-its-kind picture with me. The boys on the bicycles are Jesse and Harry Porter. I believe this may be the only picture available of this old covered bridge.
Mr. Croft told me the covered bridge was rather large, and it was about the length of four cars. He told me that he remembered when he was about 9 or 10, in 1936-37, that he and the Porter boys, Jess and Harry, would climb in the rafters of the bridge and when the Pepsi truck would pass through on its round from the Lewis Croft Store going to the store at Irma, they would grab them a Pepsi. As the truck would go through the bridge and exit out the other side there was a high spot on the road that made the back of the truck rise up in the air as it cleared the bridge. What a special treat for these 3 young boys, as it must have been a quite an adventure as they waited until just the right time to grab their prize drink.
He also remembered another time he and his brother were loading loose hay on their wagon to take to their barn on the Raleigh Rd. (now the Carol Croft Rd.) and wanting to get through faster, they overloaded the hay wagon by piling the hay too high, as the too-high-piled wagon exited the covered bridge over the rise, the hay was caught by the rafters and pulled off the wagon. He smiled and said it took them longer to reload it than it would have to made two trips.
I'm sure the old covered bridge would have many stories to tell us if it was still here and could talk. I not only got to enjoy these wonderful memories and history of the old covered bridge, but Mr. and Mrs. Croft shared some other pieces of history of the area with me. Mr. Croft said me the area around where the old bridge was located was called Porterville, because of all the Porter families living there. Mrs. Croft showed me the old Liberty Grove Christian Church that you could see from their home. It is now a family dwelling. She remembers attending church there, and the revivals, homecomings and dinners on home-made tables underneath the trees. But like so many of the country churches it had to close its doors due to lack of membership and lack of interest.
The old covered bridge had gotten in really bad condition and was torn down in the 1950's as the new concrete bridge that was constructed down stream was built and ready for use in 1959.