Digest>Archives> September 2009

Keeper's Korner

Tidbits and Editorial Comments from the Tower

By Timothy Harrison


Champlain Lighthouse Open Again

New York’s historic Champlain Memorial Lighthouse, once known as Crown Point Lighthouse is again open to the public after restoration. The lighthouse was constricted in 1910-12 using part of the base of the original lighthouse. It is located on the southern end of Lake Champlain.

Biloxi Visitors Center Delayed

Construction of the Biloxi Lighthouse Park and Visitors Center and Museum at Mississippi’s Biloxi Lighthouse has been delayed. It seems that the state wants more time for archeological exploration at the site.

Repairs At Whiskey Island

Some repairs have finally been made at the abandoned Whiskey Point Coast Guard Station in Cleveland, Ohio. The station is now owned by the City of Cleveland, which can’t seem to figure out how to save the historic structure with its amazing watch tower. However, as usual, volunteer preservationists, have stepped forward with a plan to save the structure and turn it into a museum and Coast Guard interpretative center. In fact the U.S. Coast Guard Tug Association is moving the 66-year old vessel, Apalachee, to the site to be restored as part of the future exhibits at the former station. (Photograph courtesy Ryan O’Neill.) For additional photos visit O’Neill’s web site http://illicitohio.com/illicitohio/whiskyisland/page_0001.html

Gold Medal Replica Goes To Museum

A replica of the Gold-Life Saving Medal awarded to Lucian Clemons, for his rescue of the crew from the vessel Consuelo of the coast of Marblehead, Ohio on May 1, 1875, is now on display at the Marblehead Lighthouse Historical Society Museum at the Marblehead Lighthouse in Marblehead, Ohio. The original medal is on display at the is at the Inland Seas Maritime Museum in Vermilion, Ohio.

Money For Munising

The Munising Range Lights on Lake Superior in Munising, Michigan are expected to get $225,000 for restoration of the little known lighthouses. The work will be undertaken under the direction of the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore.

Coast Guard Museum On Hold

Plans for a new Coast Guard Museum in New London. CT at Fort Trumbull has been put on hold due to the current economic conditions. Plans called for a new $65 million dollar facility. The Coast Guard is the only branch of the military that does not have a museum. Instead of building a new museum in New London, CT, perhaps the planners should consider establishing a National Coast Guard Museum at the site of the Lighthouse Depot on Staten Island, New York where the failed National Lighthouse Museum was going to be. After all, the site was owned by the Coast Guard after it took over the Lighthouse Service. And, rather than building a bunch of new buildings, it would make better sense to save and maintain the historic buildings at the old Lighthouse Depot on Staten Island. The Coast Guard has a rich heritage to the site that they left to decay. It’s time to make a reversal and save the site; it would be perfect for the Coast Guard.

Toledo Ramp Found

The new 40-foot ramp at the Toledo Lighthouse, thought to have been stolen by vandals has been found. Apparently, rather than being stolen, vandals instead caused it to sink. However, at press time, an eight foot by twenty-eight foot dock was still missing from the lighthouse.

Trouble At Point Abino Lighthouse

Although the local community of Fort Erie, Ontario Canada has been offered $425,000 by the Canadian government for lighthouse restoration, in a closed door hearing the small minded public officials of the town council vote 6 to 1 to sell the Point Abino keeper’s house and use the money to restore only the tower. Obviously, the Point Abino Lighthouse Preservation Society has objected to this move, but there is little they can do. Problems here have been ongoing as were reported in the February 1999 and July 2001 issues of Lighthouse Digest. The lighthouse is surrounded by private property and even the road to the lighthouse is privately owned and the locals continue to do everything in their power to keep the public away from the lighthouse and now they are splitting up the property by selling the light keeper’s house.

New London Ledge Light Event

The New London Ledge Lighthouse Foundation is hosting a Centennial Gala to raise money for the Connecticut beacon. It will be held on Sept. 25 at 5:30Pm at the "Port ‘N Starboard’ Banquet Center at Ocean Beach Park in New London, CT. Tickets are $75. FMI e-mail Light@Gipstein.com.

Multiple Benefits From New Lighthouse Postage Stamps

The new lighthouse postage stamps, which are now available from your local post office, offer everyone a unique opportunity to help promote lighthouses as well as to help save them. When purchasing lighthouse postage stamps for yourself, purchase some extra stamps to donate to your favorite lighthouse group.

Every envelope that you affix a stamp on helps to promote lighthouses, and the stamps you donate to your local or favorite lighthouse group helps them defray the cost of mailings of their newsletters. Plus, you’ll be helping the United States Postal Service and you might be able to deduct the postage stamps that you donate to the lighthouse group on your federal taxes. Now that’s what we call Multiple Benefits!


We have the sad duty of reporting on the passing of Priscilla Reece of Hingham, Massachusetts. Priscilla was the daughter of Ralph Norwood, the first USCG Head Keeper of Boston Lighthouse and was the sister of Georgia Norwood (of the book Storm Child) and she was the sister-in-law of the late Maurice Babcock Jr. whose father, Maurice Sr., was the last keeper of the United States Lighthouse Service to serve at Boston Light.

Visit Us At Great Lakes Lighthouse Festival

Be sure to visit our booth at the Great Lakes Lighthouse Festival to be held this October 8 to 11 in Alpena, Michigan. The Lighthouse Digest booth will be open Oct 9-11, Friday, Saturday and Sunday at the Thunder Bay Recreation Center in Alpena. We hope to see you there!

Cape Lookout National Seashore Looking For Descendants

The Cape Cod National Seashore is looking for descendants of people who served at the Cape Lookout Lighthouse, the Cape Lookout Life-Saving Station and the Coast Guard at Cape Lookout. They want to invite you and honor you at the October 10 150th Anniversary of the lighting of the Cape Lookout Lighthouse. If you are a descendant of some who served there or know of someone who is, please call Wouter Ketel at the National Park Service at 252-728-2250 or e-mail him at wouter_ketel@nps.gov.

This story appeared in the September 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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