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Mikić’s Bridge

The name "Mikić Bridge" outlived the fate of the wooden and iron bridge.

The main street in Ćuprija is divided into two parts, from the bridge on Morava to the bridge on Ravanica and from the bridge on Ravanica to Slavija. And everyone calls that bridge on Ravanica "Mikić's Bridge".

The Romans chose a high plateau above the Velika Morava for their castrum, because it could not possibly be flooded by the river. The wild Morava changed its course, it meandered around the Horeum Margi, creating a natural protection on the western and northern side of the fortification. And on the eastern side was the bed of the Ravanica river.

The Romans and Turks built bridges across the Velika Morava upstream from the mouth of the Ravanica river, next to the left bank of the Ravanica.

It is not remembered where the first bridge over Ravanica was located. It is not even known when it was built. It may have been built by the ancient Romans, because the road from Viminacium to Horeum Margi went through today's Medveđa, then through Stubline to the northeastern part of the castrum, where the remains of the tower still exist today.

Served Roman legionnaires lived outside the walls of the castrum, near the first bridge on Ravanica and the gate through which the fort was entered.

Eight centuries ago, at the time of the creation of the Nemanjic State, the Ravno settlement spread next to the remains of the ruined Roman city. For construction, they used stone and brick, the same that the Turks later used for their buildings.

The Turkish mosque was located in the place where today's church is, next to which a new settlement called Ćuprija sprung up. This is why the later wooden bridges on the Velika Morava were built downstream from the Ravanica mouth. The Jagodina mahala stretched from Velika Morava, past the present-day church, towards Paraćin. And on that route there had to be a crossing over the Ravanica river.

In the middle of the nineteenth century, the people of Srem and Banat settled in Ćuprija, and Sremska and Banatska streets were built for them, which are still called that today. On the old city plan, Sremska street can be seen as part of the road over Vezirov brdo to Zaječar.

As the settlement of Ćuprija grew, there was an increasing need to build bridges over the Ravanica river.

Two ministers wrote a letter to the knez back in 1844 asking for approval and money to build a bridge over the Ravanica river on the Constantinople road near Ćuprija. A bridge that would be similar to the already built bridge in Paraćin over the river Crnica. The Ravanica River could not always be crossed, so there was a need for a bridge, especially because the banks of the river were steep.

There are no sketches or drawings of that wooden bridge on the "Constantinople Road" which in the XIX century connected the left and right banks of Ravanica, at the place where the "Mikić Bridge" is located today.

At the beginning of the XIX century, during the time of Knez Miloš, many families from the Pashaluk of Niš moved to Ćuprija. Among them were the Mikići, originally from the vicinity of Prokuplje. Members of the big family had different fates.

Their estate stretched on the right bank of the Ravanica river. The famous "Mikić's Tavern" was also there. And today there is still "Leka's house", also known as "Mlinareva's house", one of the most beautiful houses in Pomoravlje. Of course, the wooden bridge on Ravanica was the "Mikić Bridge".
During the regulation of the Ravanica river, the main street in Ćuprija was reconstructed and the old iron bridge was replaced by today's wide concrete bridge.

The name "Mikić Bridge" outlived the fate of the wooden and iron bridge. It also outlived the fate of the descendants of the first Mikić who moved to Ćuprija - Mika Bakalin or Mika Prokupčanin.

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