Montignac’s medieval bridge no longer exists but is mentioned and represented in several of Lord Geoffroy de Pons seals from the 13th century. It was located in line with rue de la Pègerie. Like the Valentré Bridge in Cahors, it was defended by both a central tower and a barbican on the town side. It was also lined with shops. Already in a poor state by the start of the 16th century, it was destroyed by Protestants during a siege of the town in 1580.
The marquis of Hautefort, lord of Montignac, had it rebuilt several times between 1614 and 1623, but each newly constructed bridge was washed away when the Vézère flooded. Residents of the left bank could not reach the village centre or worship at the Saint-Pierre-ès-Liens parish church.
In the mid-18th century, a royal route linking Sarlat with Limoges was completed at the instigation of the stewards of Guyenne province. Passing by the heart of Montignac, it led to the construction of a new bridge around 40 metres downstream of the remains of the previous one. The works took almost ten years and were completed in 1777.
The Vézère is an unpredictable body of water with significant and sometimes brutal changes. On the north column of the bridge, two inscriptions give the height of the two main floods of that century, which occurred in 1728 and 1768. To ensure the longevity of the bridge, its deck was therefore built above the benchmark level of 1728.
The flood of October 1960 is still etched in memories today. After several days of intense rain, the Vézère suddenly rose ten metres above its banks. This disaster claimed a number of lives and caused considerable damage, leaving behind a landscape of desolation, the traces of which can still be seen in the valley today.