A product of the Northern California Gold Rush, the Bridgeport Covered Bridge is believed to be the longest, single-span, wooden covered bridge in the United States. Crossing the south fork of the Yuba River at a span of 233 feet, the bridge was built by the Virginia City Turnpike Company as part of a 14-mile toll road authorized by the California state legislature. The toll road was an essential link connecting Virginia City, Nevada, and the silver-producing Comstock Lode with the centers of California commerce.
Nicholas Montgomery Powers built the bridge. It was first constructed behind the village, then taken apart and reassembled over the stream. Some residents questioned the idea of re-constructing it, but Powers was so confident of the bridge's durability that he sat on the roof when the final trestles supporting it were removed. From his perch he reportedly said: "If the bridge goes down, I never want to see the sun rise again!"