Like most Lighthouse Digest subscribers, Wallace G. Holdsworth, Sr. has had a keen interest in lighthouses for many years. And, like most he’s always wondered what it would be like to live in a lighthouse or own a lighthouse.
However, the closest that most people with an interest in lighthouses can do is built or purchase a lawn lighthouse to decorate their lawn while showing their love for lighthouses as Holdsworth did for his home in Palatine, Illinois.
However, for his summer home on Lake Skegemog in Rapid City, Michigan he wanted something more. In searching the Internet he found a company that sold 25-foot tall storage shed lighthouses, which he really liked. However, he was unable to get a building permit for the shed.
Holdsworth then contacted an architect association asking for help. He received replies from 22 architects, all of whom had built lighthouse facsimiles in one form or another. He met with five of them and one actually submitted plans, which Holdsworth was not happy with. He then heard from Roman Design Architects of Royal Oak, Michigan who offered their services pro bono. Apparently they were so confident of their ability; they told Holdsworth that he would only have to pay them, if he liked the concept.
When the conceptual drawings arrived, Holdsworth was immediately convinced of the firm’s vision and talent and in short order a contract was signed. Bids were then send out to six contractors and within a short time construction began.
It was decided to attach the structure to the home for easy access in all weather. The lantern room can easily accommodate seven adult persons. Just like many real lighthouses, Holdsworth lighthouse has a copper dome and the tower is finished in white cement stucco. This spring, he intends to install a stairway from the attic of the house with a chair lift so that his wife, who uses a walker, can easily get to the lantern room.
Holdsworth said he is delighted with the finished project and he encourages others to follow the dream, just like he did.
This story appeared in the
May 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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