Port Elizabeth of Yore: Bridges Over Troubled Water

River crossings for the early traveller were always time consuming and sometimes even hazardous if they were dependent upon the tides such as the drift across the Zwartkops was. Perhaps that explains the Divisional Council’s decision to place this crossing on its first to-do list after its establishment.  

This covers the trials and tribulations of the history of the Zwartkops River crossing from the use of the drift, to the pont and ultimately the various bridges and ultimately their effect on the ecosystem. 

Main picture: The Wylde Bridge across the Swartkops River. This bridge replaced the Rawson Bridge

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Port Elizabeth of Yore: The Tolls

The Authorities always have to find a source of revenues to cover the costs of the maintenance of the roads. In the case of vehicles and animals using them, they always have a ready solution: charging a service fee in the form of a toll. In Port Elizabeth, the first toll was installed within four years of Port Elizabeth being established. It was located in Queen Street, just beyond the future Russell Road and commenced operation in August 1824. 

Main picture: The old Toll house at the Sunday’s River Bridge on the Grahamstown Road

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