History

This Sacramento icon is becoming very cool lately. Here’s a 1935 video of the day it opened.

Watch the 1935 opening of Tower Bridge in Sacramento

A film titled '"Gay ceremony marks opening of a huge bridge" shows a large crowd gathered to witness the opening of Tower Bridge over the Sacramento River on Dec. 18, 1935. California Governor Frank Merriam (1934-1939) presides over the ceremony.
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A film titled '"Gay ceremony marks opening of a huge bridge" shows a large crowd gathered to witness the opening of Tower Bridge over the Sacramento River on Dec. 18, 1935. California Governor Frank Merriam (1934-1939) presides over the ceremony.

It’s not as old as the I Street Bridge to the north. Nor as grandiloquent as the state Capitol. But Tower Bridge is arguably Sacramento’s singular icon. And it’s gaining steam as a focal point of civic pride.

When the city launched its Farm to Fork celebration a few years ago, it chose the bridge deck as venue for its big Sunday communal dinner. And when the Republic FC soccer team hit town, its boisterous fan group named itself Tower Bridge Battalion.

Meanwhile, the bridge has achieved cult status on the Sacramento subreddit page, where photographers post photos of the span in various states of repose as if it were a Vogue fashion model. City leaders now want to build a streetcar across it.

But the bridge probably was most celebrated on its opening day, in 1935, when thousands of Sacramentans came out to watch the bridge deck rise over the city for the first time.

Above, see the video of that moment, a slice of the capital city history. (Notice the train rails running across the middle of the bridge).

David Caraccio: 916-321-1125, @DavidCaraccio

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