Digest>Archives> June 2009

Keeper’s Korner

By Timothy Harrison


Lightship Money

Delaware’s Overfalls Lightship is set to receive $400,000 in federal economic stimulus money to help pay for construction of a permanent berth for the historic ship. The vessel

recently underwent an extensive hull restoration. The Overfalls Maritime Museum has already raised $350,000 toward the project.

Potato Chip Founder Dies

Stephen Bernard, founder of the Cape Cod Potato Chip Company and two other snack food brands has died at the age of 61. Many of you may have seen his products on store shelves, all which featured a lighthouse on the package. His company even produced pretzels shaped like lighthouses. I first met him about 17 years ago when he hired a tour boat to take members of the media out to Boston Lighthouse in Massachusetts in an attempt to draw public awareness to lighthouse preservation issues. He was a true entrepreneur and dedicated preservationist. Our sincere condolences go out to his family.

New Dungeness Founder Dies

Al Simpkins, the founder and first president of Washington’s New Dungeness Light Station Association has passed away. He was 87. In 1994 the group was founded around his kitchen table and over the years he dedicated himself to saving and restoring the lighthouse. He was moved to tears when a room displaying the history of the lighthouse was dedicated in his name. He was a true lighthouse leader who made a difference and left a legacy that will be carried forward for years to come.

Lighthouse Exhibit in Saginaw

The Castle Museum and the Annex in Saginaw, Michigan has a new lighthouse exhibit that can be viewed from now until October of this year. One special part of the exhibit is a wooden replica of the Saginaw River Range Lighthouse built by John Heinz. For more information you can call the museum at 989-752-2861 or visit their web site at www.castlemuseum.org.

Biloxi Restoration to Begin

Work has begun to restore Mississippi’s Biloxi Lighthouse that was damaged in Hurricane Katrina. After the hurricane the lighthouse became a symbol of the community’s resilience. As well as restoring the lighthouse, plans call for a visitor’s center to be built. It is home that by spring of next year the lighthouse will again be open to the public.


In the story titled "Dawn’s Early Lighthouse" in the April 2009 issue on page 18, we indicated in the caption of the Fresnel lens at Patos Island Lighthouse that the lens is now on display at Admiralty Head Lighthouse. This is incorrect. The lens that was once at Patos Island Lighthouse is actually held in private ownership. The lens on display at Admiralty Head Lighthouse is from Alki Point Lighthouse.

In the story about the Rare Telescope being donated to Little River Lighthouse, in the April 2009 issue on page 7, we stated that the lighthouse was re-lighted in October 2000. The correct year is 2001. We apologize for these errors.

Bell Rock to Be Refurbished

The world famous Bell Rock Lighthouse may soon get a nearly $1.5 million refurbishment. Designed by legendary Scottish Lighthouse Engineer Robert Stevenson the lighthouse is considered one of Scotland’s greatest engineering feats of the 19th century. Bell Rock Lighthouse is situated about 11 miles off the Arbroath Coast.

National Trust Helps Cana

Wisconsin’s Cana Island Lighthouse has received a grant of $32,000 from the Jeffris Family Foundation through the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

One Hundred Thanks

Shirley Morong would like to thank the many people who sent her birthday wishes for her 100th Birthday. She said so many cards were received that it would be impossible to write and thank each and every person. Over the years Shirley has shared many memories and photos with us of lighthouse life as it once was many years ago, and for that we sincerely thank her.

Capitola Lighthouse

Patrick Kearns of Capitola Village in California has received approval to build a 31-foot tall decorative lighthouse attached to his gallery that will be based on the design of the Point Wilson Lighthouse in Port Townsend, Washington. The lighthouse will even have a restroom for people with disabilities.

Great Lakes Lighthouse Exhibit

The Dossin Great Lakes Museum and the Detroit Historical Society have a new exhibit titled "L is for Lighthouses," that will run through April 2010. The exhibit includes artifacts from some lighthouse keepers, several lighthouse lenses, mechanical drawings and interprets the story of men and women lighthouse keepers on the Great Lakes. They are located at 100 Strand on Belle Isle in Detroit. For more information you can call them at 313-852-4051.

This story appeared in the June 2009 edition of Lighthouse Digest Magazine. The print edition contains more stories than our internet edition, and each story generally contains more photographs - often many more - in the print edition. For subscription information about the print edition, click here.

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