|For many years before the Golden Gate Bridge was built, the only way to get across San Francisco Bay was by ferry, and by the early twentieth century the Bay was clogged with ferries. In the 1920s, engineer and bridge-builder Joseph Strauss became convinced that a bridge should be constructed across the Golden Gate.
Before its completion in 1937, the bridge was considered impossible to build, due to persistently foggy weather, 60-mile-per-hour winds, and strong ocean currents, which whipped through a deep canyon below. In fact, the bridge is commonly known as the "Bridge that couldn't be built." Despite these unforgiving natural elements, the bridge was constructed in a little more than four years. The total cost was $35 million. The total length of the bridge spans 1.2 miles. Eleven men lost their lives during the construction of the bridge.