ExpiredBridge Building Part II – The Arch (2-day) – Sept. 8 & 9, 2018 (Mont Vernon, NH)

We're sorry, but all tickets sales have ended because the event is expired.
  • 2-Day Bridge Building Workshop: (9/8 & 9/9/18)
    September 8, 2018 - September 9, 2018
    9:00 am - 5:00 pm

Up to 12 participants with Master Craftsmen certified instructors Dan Snow and Brian Post, along with site coordinator Pete Ryder.

Learn to build a dry stone arched bridge!  This workshop will culminate the bridge building series with a two day build of our dry stone arched pony (foot) bridge.

The dimensions of the arch will be a 5′-6″ arch span, with a 7 foot width across the the barrel vault.  Dry stone arch bridges have been a prominent feature of the landscape in Southern NH since the 1800’s.  But few have been built since concrete and steel became readily available.  This is your chance to learn, hands on, what building a dry stone arched bridge takes.

The workshop will cover bridge terminology, structural design, and stone shaping, as well as building the barrel vault and side walls that make the bridge.   At the end of the workshop a completed dry stone bridge will stand!  The skills learned here can be applied to all types of arches and other advanced stone features, both dry and mortared.

This workshop will kick off where the Bridge Building Part 1 left off.  The abutments will have been built and the springers and form should be in place.  Thus we will begin the workshop by assembling the arch made up of ‘voussoirs’.  These stones must be carefully shaped and fit for the bridge to stand.

As the arch is getting built, the wing walls (retaining walls either side of the abutments) will also be built.   Once the arch is completed the side walls (spandrels) will be built.  Buttressing for the abutments will be built as well. This will be finished with cope stones, and finally the bridge road bed.

Much of the shaping has been done in the previously held stone shaping workshops, but there will be some refining to do.

The bridge is primarily being built from stone that came from Semya Stone quarry in Actworth NH (formerly Allstone).  Semya donated much of the stone for this special build!  This level bedded metamorphic stone is quite strong, but also reasonably shapeable.  Both key traits needed for bridge construction.  The stone is generally of a size that most workshop participants will find reasonable to lift (most stones between 10 and 50 lbs).

This is a moderately advanced workshop.  All participants for this workshop must have taken at least 1 prior wall building workshop or be a DSWA-GB certified waller.  The intended audience is anyone looking to take their stone work to the next level.  It is idea for anyone from novice to Level III certified.   If you are excited about this project but have never taken a workshop before, sign up for the introductory workshop on August 25 so you will be ready to take this one!

Don’t forget to also sign up for the historic Bridge Tour happening the day before Sept 7th!

July bridge stone shaping class
*Please note if you encounter errors or problems while registering please email Brian Post or call (802) 490-9607, so we can correct the problem, and improve our registration process.
Workshop participants shaping voussoirs
Workshop participants working on shaping a springer block from a granite boulder
Pete Ryder expaining the forces involved in an arched bridge
Stone arch bridge terminology
The underside of a dry stone arch is wondrous. We will be building one like this historic bridge, though at a smaller scale.

Landscape Architects receive 15 credit hours for taking this workshop through the LA CES system.

Dry Stone Arch Bridges

Rare in most places in the world, historic dry stone bridges are fairly common in Southern NH.  Be part of this special workshop to add another.  This is likely the 1st dry stone bridge built in Southern NH in over 100 years!

Don’t forget to also sign up for our Historic Bridge tour on Sept 7th.  We will see 11 of the best bridges with expert guides.

About The Instructors:


2 Lamson Road, Mont Vernon, New Hampshire, 03057, United States


Work on rebuilding historic walls and adding new stone features to this historic Southern NH Property.  This is the site of the 2017 bridge build.  Field stone from the property and quarried ledge stone are both used on this site for training.