191118_MONTEREY

Thousands of residents attended the 1930 dedication of Janesville’s Monterey Bridge.

The top headline in the Sept. 20, 1930, Janesville Gazette was splashed across the front page in a font size usually reserved for a declaration of war: "ALL HAIL BRIDGE OPENING TODAY."

The official opening ceremony for the Monterey Bridge started with a parade from the high school to the bridge, a march of about 1.5 miles.

Gov. Walter J. Kohler was scheduled to speak but was unable to attend. That probably was a good thing because the event featured several other speakers, including City Manager Henry Traxler, dignitaries from the state highway commission, the secretary of the local chamber of commerce, the Rock County Board chairman, a representative from the Illinois governor's office, officials from two railroad companies and an official from Beloit.

Imogene Bingman, a local girl who looked like she was about 8 years old, was chosen as the official representative for the city of Janesville. Jean Lord, a child from Beloit, was picked to cut the ribbon on the south side of the bridge.

Both girls marched to the center of the bridge after the ribbon was cut. They were followed by bands from their respective cities.

"The two groups meeting in the middle of the bridge proper signifies the joining of the two cities over the new Monterey Bridge," the story reported.

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