Digest>Archives> Nov/Dec 2011

The Mystery Women of DeTour Reef Lighthouse


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Vintage image of the 1931 DeTour Reef Lighthouse, ...

The young women shown in these photos were not lighthouse keepers; however, they did do some “lighthouse keeping” at Michigan’s Detour Reef Lighthouse. But, no one seems to know who they are.

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When these young ladies visited the DeTour Reef Lighthouse in 1958 to have lunch or dinner with Coast Guard keepers Steve Lovett (foreground, in the photo) and Gene Anderson (background), they were making an infraction of the rules. However, the head keeper, Charlie Jones, was on shore leave, which gave Anderson and Lovett the perfect opportunity to sneak the girls out to the offshore lighthouse.

While there, the girls prepared a home cooked meal for the young men and one of them went into the lantern room to get her photo taken next to the Fresnel lens.

The DeTour Reef Lighthouse Preservation Society, just like any other lighthouse group, wants to document as much of its lighthouse history as possible. And, every photograph is an important part of that history, especially the now historic image that shows the girls in the kitchen of the lighthouse.

The photo clearly shows a pristine and homey kitchen, especially for an offshore light station. The view from the kitchen window is one most people never get to experience.

Unfortunately, 53 years have passed since these photos were taken and neither Lovett nor Anderson can recall the girls’ names.

Most likely they lived in the area near the lighthouse. But that was over 50 years ago, and people’s appearances change and many people from that time may no longer be around. So far, none of the locals have been able to come up with the names of the young ladies.

If you can help identify the women in the photo please e-mail Editor@LighthouseDigest.com or write to us at P.O. Box 250, East Machias, ME 04630.

This story appeared in the Nov/Dec 2011 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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