The historic Red Covered Bridge in Princeton was heavily damaged after a semi truck hit it.

“We are absolutely devastated at the destruction of the beloved, iconic Red Covered Bridge,” Bureau County Historical Society and History Center said on social media.

The bridge, built in 1863 and located 1.5 miles north of Princeton on Illinois Route 26, was “one of five remaining covered bridges in Illinois,” according to Enjoy Illinois, the official website of the Illinois Office of Tourism. “It crosses Big Bureau Creek and was once part of the Peoria-Galena Trail. This beautiful landmark is a delight for artists, photographers and nature lovers. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The 149 foot span was built at a cost of $3,148.57.”

Pieces of the semi were being cleaned up when Our Quad Cities News arrived at the scene.

Cleanup crews attend to a semi that hit the Red Covered Bridge in Princeton on November 16, 2023. (Jackson Rozinsky,