Posted Thursday, August 9th, 2018

Dedicate Historic Marker and Panel at Canal Street Bridge 

The Morris County Board of Freeholders joined with Roxbury’s Mayor and Council and the township’s and county historic community on Wednesday night (Aug. 8) to formally dedicate a historic bridge marker and interpretive panel that highlight the township’s Drakesville Historic Park and Morris Canal Greenway preservation efforts.

Photo: (front l/r) Freeholders Doug Cabana and Kathy DeFillippo, Rosbury Historic Trust member Mary Ann Dudak, and Roxbury Councilwoman Jacqueline Albrecht; (back row) Freeholder Heather Darling, Heritage Commission Acting Director Peg Shultz, Mayor Mark Crowley, Town Historian Richard Cramond, and Countilman Richard Zoschak

(front l/r) Freeholders Doug Cabana and Kathy DeFillippo, Rosbury Historic Trust member Mary Ann Dudak, and Roxbury Councilwoman Jacqueline Albrecht; (back row l/r) Freeholder Heather Darling, Heritage Commission Acting Director Peg Shultz, Mayor Mark Crowley, Town Historian Richard Cramond and Countilman Richard Zoschak

“The terrific work done here by the township to preserve an important piece of this county’s history history is remarkable,” said Morris County Freeholder Director Doug Cabana. “The preserved Silas Riggs House, King House and King Store, and some remaining Morris Canal features that have been protected here in Roxbury give us an important look at out past, and help us all better understand our roots. I applaud you for these efforts.”

photo: King Homestead Museum

King Homestead Museum

The historic marker was installed at the Canal Street Bridge over Drake’s Brook in Roxbury, and the interpretive panels are located nearby. The panels are similar to those erected recently in Mount Olive, at the Flanders-Drakestown Road bridge.

Joining the Freeholder Board and Mayor Mark Crowley and council members at last night’s event were Peg Shultz, archivist and Acting Director of the Morris County Heritage Commission; Mary Ann Dudak, member of the Roxbury Historic Trust; Richard Cramond, the Roxbury Historian; plus members of the township’s open space preservation team.Freeholders and Roxbury Officials Tout Township's Drakesville Historic Park Preservation Efforts

The Canal Street Bridge Over Drakes Brook was built in the late 1920s, as part of a project to close the Morris Canal, Cramond explained to the freeholders. Here are some facts about that bridge:

  • The original Canal Street bridge was a two-span concrete bridge that was about 16-feet wide.
  • It suffered extensive deterioration of the concrete due to salt and water seepage. It was deemed structurally deficient by the NJ DOT following an inspection in the early 2000s.
  • The new stone-facing bridge, which opened in 2014, is a precast concrete structure is 26-feet long and 29-feet wide.
  • It carries just over 500 vehicles daily.
  • The county funded construction project for the new bridge cost $470,000.

As required by the State Historic Preservation Office, a historic marker has been placed at the bridge and an interpretive sign has been erected near the King House, both of which highlight the Morris Canal and the former Drakesville (currently Ledgewood) area of the township.