The Hartland Bridge was constructed in 1901 by the Hartland Bridge Company. It was funded by tolls until it was purchased by the provincial government in 1906. The bridge was not originally built covered.
In 1920, two spans of the bridge collapsed due to river ice. The bridge reopened in 1922 after construction to repair the structure, at which time the bridge was also covered, despite some local opposition.
A pedestrian walkway was added to the bridge in 1945. The bridge was declared a national historic site in 1980 and is renowned as the "World's Longest Covered Bridge" with a span length of 1282 feet.