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Ambassador Bridge crew doing maintenance work to the sign at the very top,
363 feet above the Detroit River.

Before the construction of the Ambassador Bridge in 1929, (the longest international suspension bridge in North America) the only method of moving people, cars and trucks across the Detroit River between Windsor and Detroit was by ferry boat. The bridge’s builder, Joseph Bower of McClintic-Marshall Co. was also responsible for its name – he thought the bridge served as an “ambassador” between Canada and the United States.


Above: Construction of the Ambassador Bridge began with the U.S. tower on March 31, 1928 and was completed on July 14 of that same year. Work on the Canadian tower started April 20, 1928 and was finished July 27.

In the middle photo, taken on September 12, 1928, the bridge has really started to take shape. Metal beams, prefabricated in Rankin, Pennsylvania, were lifted by crane from barges in the Detroit River.In the far right photo, taken from the American side in September, 1928, the span nears completion.

Right: Almost done – September 27, 1929 looking towards Sandwich.

To mark the beginning of construction of the bridge on the Canadian side, a special ceremony was held. Hundreds of people gathered in the pouring rain to see Sandwich Mayor Alexander McKee drive a stake into the ground at Riverside Drive and Huron Church Road to mark the site of the borings.

Photos: the Detroit International Bridge Company (Ambassador Bridge)

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