A little history of Pont Bonaparte in Lyon
Our story began in 1546, when they raised a first bridge in order to link Saint-Jean cloister with the left bank of the river Saône.
In 1634, Christophe Marie (the engineer who designed pont Marie in Paris) rebuilt a wooden bridge with his own money.
About 30 shops opened on it, with a keeper who had to close the gates every night.
But with the floods, the storms, my gosh! They had to rebuild a new one in 1669. Even the toll they founded in 1634 was deleted because of the birth of the Dauphin, Louis XIV and Maria-Theresa of Austria's first son.
Shops closed at the end of the 17th century. Instead, little benches were put, so people could peacefully stroll here.
But on February 25th 1711, a big flood destroyed our wooden bridge. In 1808, a stony one was raised.
The same year, Napoleon I signed the treaty of Tilsitt with Russian emperor, so they called the new bridge Tilsitt.
But it was too big, not very practical for boats, so a new one was built in 1864. Final deathblow: German armies destroyed arches in 1944... so the current bridge dates back to 1950.