Even in the early Middle AgesDrohiczynwas located favourably on the crossway of two important trade routes of aquatic and overland kind. Their existence is confirmed by the Arabic merchants’ coins found in the vicinity of Drohiczyn as well as numerous lead trading seal findings. The most important land trade route led from Brześć in north-west direction. The mentioned aquatic route went through a huge water artery of Bug river. Regardless of the fact that big rivers constitute a convenient way to move and transport commodities, there are situations in which they may be a liability for travelling, especially when they cross important land trade routes. That was, and still is, the case of Drohiczyn. Bug changes its river bed in a very dynamic and frequent way. It must be remembered that Drohiczyn was situated on both sides of the river in the Middle Ages and modern times. For this reason, a communication between these two parts of the town was difficult, particularly in winter and autumn season. The situation was slightly better in winter since it was possible to cross frozen river and in summer, as there were places where water level was low enough to cross river through fords. The documents clearly state that there was also carriage transport of the commodities. Yet, since time immemorial, people managed to tackle the problem of passing the river by building bridges or barrages and organising transportation.
One may assume the existence of a bridge in this very important Podlasie town. Nowadays, there is no bridge that would allow crossing the river in Drohiczyn. In order to do that, one has to use a ferry that shuttles in summer period, make way down the river to the bridge in Tonkiele village or another one, up the river, where principal road number 19 leads. Was this the case in the past? This article is an attempt to answer that question since the matter is not yet resolved.
In July, 2000, a team of underwater archaeologists from Toruń in their summary and report on the search of the bridge in Drohiczyn claimed, that “there is no information in the literary sources about bridge on Bug river in the fortified town of Drohiczyn”. This is, however, not true. There are some literary sources that survived and they are the evidence for Drohiczyn’s bridge existence in the first half of the 16th century. Moreover, a vast number of them is printed in various publishing raging from 19th century to present days. Most of them are documents taken from copies included in Lithuanian Metric, i.e. Grand Duchy Of Lithuania legal counsel books. They are also present in land registration books of Drohiczyn area and one of the documents is preserved in a form of a scroll.