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Yankton’s roots the meridian bridge Before the Meridian Bridge was built, people would cross the Missouri River via ferries, rafts, walking on ice, and a pontoon bridge that could only be used during certain months. Finally, in 1919, Yanktonians had had enough and got together to form and fund the Meridian Highway Bridge Company. Two years later, construction of the Meridian Bridge had begun. It started off as a lift bridge that allowed riverboats to pass underneath. The top level of the narrow bridge held traffic in both directions, while the bottom level, intended for a railroad, sat unused until 1953. It served as the main vehicle connection between SD and NE until 2011, when it was converted into a pedestrian bridge. gavins point dam | Lewis & Clark Lake With purpose to regulate river flows and generate power, the Congressdirected Gavins Point Dam was constructed in 1955, immeasurably changing the Yankton community. It gave us Lewis and Clark Lake, which draws around 2 million visitors per year. fun fact: Since the pioneer days, Yankton’s downtown bars have been on the north side of the street so women could walk on the south side, away from any bar scene shenanigans. watch & learn Yankton native Tom Brokaw, shown above during his days as a young dam tour guide, narrates a short video depicting our rich history that can be found online and at the Mead Cultural Education Center. View it here! http://bit.ly/2EzBnoI www.VisitYanktonSD.com | Yankton Visitors Guide | 7