TIMELINES: What legendary European bridge was sold to an American entrepreneur April 18, 1968?

April 18, 2012 Updated: September 29, 2015

Wednesday, April 18, 2012


April 18, 1968, the London Bridge—completed in 1831—was sold to American entrepreneur Robert P. McCulloch of McCulloch Oil for $2,460,000. The bridge was disassembled and carefully numbered to aid reconstruction and shipped to Lake Havasu City, Ariz., where it was reconstructed as a tourist attraction—Arizona’s second biggest after the Grand Canyon. The bridge was put up for sale after it was discovered in 1962 that the London Bridge was falling down. Literally it was in bad disrepair and was sinking into the Thames under the weight of traffic. The old bridge was replaced with a new concrete bridge that opened in 1973.


Today, the modern London Bridge stands over the River Thames in London, where a succession of bridges carrying the same name have stood for almost 2,000 years. Mostly they were destroyed by fire over the years. The modern London Bridge was opened by Queen Elizabeth II on March 17, 1973. It is sometimes mistakenly confused with the iconic Tower Bridge, which is the next bridge downstream.