Markers on a Bulkeley Bridge column indicate the normal seasonal high water level at Hartford and the water levels in three past major Connecticut River floods.
The normal river level at Hartford is 3.8 feet, way below the bridge supports, as shown above. The normal spring flood level is 20 feet above sea level, the lowest of the four markers on the bridge support and perhaps four feet above this part of the walkway.
The highest flood level in Hartford was at 37.0 feet above sea level in March 1936, marked by the highest of the four markers on the bridge support. A nearby plaque explains that the ground was frozen solid and about 30 inches of snow were on the ground when the 1936 rains began. Fourteen inches of rain fell over nine days and triggered the flood.