Skip to main content

It's a Wonderful Bridge

Located along US Route 20 (and New York State Routes 5 and 414), Seneca Falls, New York is known for a fair number of important events throughout its history. This town located within the Finger Lakes region of New York State is the home to the Women's Rights National Historical Park, for one. It is also said that Seneca Falls is the inspiration for the fictional town of Bedford Falls in the Christmas holiday film classic, It's a Wonderful Life.

As Frank Capra was developing his screenplay for the movie, he visited Seneca Falls as he had relatives living nearby. There are a number of similarities between Bedford Falls and Seneca Falls, such as the buildings in the towns, the location of Bedford Falls in Upstate New York and the bridge where in the film, George Bailey jumped into the water to save Clarence. In real history, there was a man by the name of Antonio Varacalli, who drowned while rescuing a young woman who had jumped off that bridge. The story of that event was adapted for the film.

In modern times, Seneca Falls does its part in honoring the legacy of It's a Wonderful Life. There is a museum called The Seneca Falls It's a Wonderful Life Museum dedicated to the film located in Seneca Falls. As for that bridge where important scenes from the movie were set, Seneca Falls has a few items of note related to the movie located on the bridge itself. While the bridge scenes were filmed at a Hollywood studio, you can find the inspiration of the bridge crossing the Seneca River (also part of the Cayuga-Seneca Canal) right in downtown Seneca Falls.

Bridge Street Bridge photos:





I have some more Seneca Falls pictures located on my Flickr account as well for you to check out.

Sources and Links:
The Seneca Falls It's a Wonderful Life Museum - https://www.wonderfullifemuseum.com

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The story behind the ghost ramps around Pittsburgh International Airport

The roads around Pittsburgh International Airport have a lot of history and intrigue.  The growth of the airport and resulting land acquisitions has changed the routing of many roads in Western Allegheny County.  As the airport grew and traffic around the airport increased, the need for new roads would also change the landscape.  Of course, the fact that this is Pittsburgh means there were also plans for highways that never came to be.  Two of these never built highway plans, the Beaver Valley Expressway (BVE) extension and the full-speed connection to the Southern Expressway at Flaugherty Run Road have traces - specifically ghost ramps - of highways that never came to be.

Beaver Valley Expressway Extension:

For close to three decades this unused piece of roadway along the southern end of Beaver Valley Expressway puzzled Pittsburgh area travelers.  Located near the current-day maintenance hangers for Pittsburgh International Airport, this concrete stub of a highway was supposed to be …

Quemahoning Tunnel

The Quemahoning Tunnel may have never been built by the Pennsylvanina Turnpike Commission, but it still has a history unto itself.  Originally planned to carry rail along the South Penn Railway, the tunnel never would not see any trains until 1909 when a small line named the Pittsburgh, Westmoreland & Somerset began utilizing it.  The use was brief and by the end of 1916 the PW&S was no longer in operation and abandoned the facility.  Twenty-some years later, the newly formed Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission considered using the abandoned tunnel, in fact it was shown on some original plans.  However, the PTC decided against using it, and the tunnel remained empty.

The eastern portal of the Quemahoning Tunnel is easily accessible from the PA Turnpike.  The portal is located at mile 106.3 along the westbound roadway.  The tunnel is one of the many "What Could Have Been's?" of the Pennsylvania Turnpike.  Below, Bill Symons shares photos taken in late Fall of 1986 of …

Former Greater Pittsburgh International Airport Terminal

For just over four decades, the former main terminal of Greater Pittsburgh International Airport was the city's gateway to the world.  Located nearly 20 miles west of Downtown Pittsburgh, the Joseph Hoover designed terminal would see millions of travelers pass through its doors.  Known best for the terrazzo compass in the main lobby, the terminal had many other distinguishing features.  The well landscaped entrance that led up to the curved stepped design of the terminal. Each level of the terminal would extend out further than the other allowing for numerous observation decks.  The most popular observation deck, the "Horizon Room", was located on the fourth floor.


From when it opened in the Summer of 1952 until its closing on September 30, 1992, the terminal would grow from a small regional airport to the main hub for USAir.  The terminal would see numerous expansions and renovations over its 40 years of service.  Expansions in 1959, 1972, and 1980 increased the capac…