Lighthouse keeping did not always take place inside a tower protected from the wind and the elements as can be seen in this photo of the Sturgeon Bay Bridge in Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin.
We don’t know whether this beacon at the top of the bridge was maintained by a local lighthouse keeper or by a lamp lighter, primarily because we have not done any in-depth research on it. If any of our readers can help, we’d appreciate hearing from you.
The man working on the beacon appears to be wearing a Lighthouse Service jacket and hat. Not many people would be willing to make this long climb straight up this ladder; one false slip would have meant certain death. Although the small structure at the top of the bridge might have been used to store fuel for the lantern, one also has to wonder how the fuel was brought to the top of the bridge.
In recent years, the 1930 structure, which is also known as the Michigan Street Bridge, was scheduled for demolition, but was saved because of its historical significance.
This story appeared in the
Jan/Feb 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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