Skip to main content

Duck Creek Aqueduct

Location: Metamora, IN, USA
Date: 1846
Creator(s): Hutchens, Charles

The significance of the 15-mile Whitewater Canal was not in its ability to create a profit, but rather its effect on the economic growth of the Whitewater River Valley, considered the gateway to the interior of Indiana. Before the canal, travel was challenging. Most waterways in Indiana were only navigable by canoe, and the alternative - horse and wagon - was difficult, slow and expensive.  

One of the notable features along the canal is the 71-foot Duck Creek Aqueduct, the oldest covered wooden aqueduct in the U.S. The original aqueduct was an open trough that washed away in the flood of 1847. Instead of rebuilding all of the destroyed portions, the builder ingeniously acquired a covered bridge in its early stages of construction and adapted it to replace the open trough.  

While both the canal and aqueduct were eventually abandoned, the State of Indiana restored them for recreational use in 1948. The area subsequently became the Whitewater Canal State Park.  



The Duck Creek Aqueduct, a 71-foot span, is the oldest wooden covered aqueduct in the country.
Tags: Era: 1840-1849
Innovation designated by:
Duck Creek Aqueduct
Public Domain (Author's Choice)
Duck Creek Aqueduct
Whitewater Canal
17199-18207 U.S. 52
Metamora, IN, USA

Whitewater Canal

We hope you enjoyed this essay.

Please support America's only magazine of the history of engineering and innovation, and the volunteers that sustain it with a donation to Invention & Technology.


Stay informed - subscribe to our newsletter.
The subscriber's email address.