Digest>Archives> Jan/Feb 2019

Squaw Island Changes Hands

By Cynthia Jaye


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Squaw Island Lighthouse.
Photo by: Cynthia Jaye

Joe and Debbie Callen are now the new owners of Michigan’s remote Squaw Island Lighthouse.

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The spiral stairs at Squaw Island Lighthouse.
Photo by: Cynthia Jaye

Located in the Beaver Island Archipelago in Lake Michigan, the lighthouse, built in 1892, was discontinued in 1928. It was purchased in 1964 by Tom Child, and over the years, in spite of vandalism, various repairs were made from time to time at the lighthouse. However, for the most part, the lighthouse was left to the elements. In 2017, Tom Childs, then 97, hired some contractors to do major exterior restoration at the site and then put the lighthouse up for sale.

“We are going to restore it and preserve the history,” said Joe Callen, the new owner. “We want to live there part-time, while also living and working on nearby Beaver Island part time. I definitely don’t want to put up “No Trespassing” signs. I know I have a lot of work ahead of me; the first thing we’ll do is get some equipment over there and start the clean-up.”

The lighthouse is only assessable by boat, and there is no real harbor or landing area. But Joe Callan said, “We are now the stewards of Squaw Island Lighthouse.” We wish him the best of success.

This story appeared in the Jan/Feb 2019 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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