The 1,282 foot Hartland Covered Bridge is the "Longest Covered Bridge in the World". It was constructed by the Hartland Bridge Company, which was formed by citizens on both sides of the St. John River, and officially opened July 4, 1901.
In 1898, the Hon. H.R. Emmerson told the Board of Trade Delegation that a permanent bridge with eight steel spans would cost between $70,000.00 and $80,000.00. A competing bid of $27,945.00 from Albert Brewer of Woodstock was unanimously accepted by the Board of Directors and the bridge was built out of cedar, spruce and hard pine using local businessmen and trades.
The original completion date was to be May 14, 1901, but as the day approached, an emergency forced the first person to cross the bridge twelve hours early. At about 9:00pm on Monday the 13th of May, Dr. Estey responded to an urgent call to attend to a patient on the west side of the river. Dr. Estey approached the bridge workers; they placed planks so he could drive his buggy across the bridge.
The bridge was purchased by the government of New Brunswick in 1906. Two spans of the bridge were taken out by river ice April 6, 1920. The government made major repairs and covered the structure in 1922.
The side walkway was added to the bridge in 1945. On June 23, 1980, the Hartland Covered Bridge was declared a National Historic Site, and on September 15, 1999, it was declared a Provincial Historic Site.