Episode 86 –In 1825, an act of Congress authorized the building of a breakwater off of Cape Henlopen in Delaware to create a protected harbor. The new harbor that was created was called the National Harbor of Refuge. In 1907 a lighthouse at the southern end of the outer breakwater went into service. The original structure was replaced by a 76-foot-tall cast-iron lighthouse built in 1926 and automated in 1973. The Delaware River and Bay Lighthouse Foundation was founded in 1998 and became the steward for Harbor of Refuge Lighthouse; ownership was eventually transferred to the organization. Rick Ziegler is the president of the Foundation. Also in this episode: Mike Leonard’s photography is frequently seen in books, magazines, and television segments. In this second installment of “Photo Tips with Mike Leonard,” he discusses the use of memory cards in digital photography.
Episode 87 – Round Island Lighthouse, in the Straits of Mackinac, is one of the most photographed lighthouses in Michigan. The lighthouse was constructed in 1895. It was decommissioned and abandoned in 1947, and the abandoned lighthouse fell victim to the weather and vandals. Today, the lighthouse is threatened by historically high water levels in the Mackinac Straits. Matt McMullen is chairperson of the Round Island Lighthouse Preservation Society, which was formed in 2009 to aid the preservation and restoration efforts for the lighthouse. Also in this episode, Ralph Krugler, historian for the Hillsboro Lighthouse Preservation Society in Florida, tells the story of Judge B. Isler, one of Hillsboro Inlet’s most interesting keepers.
Episode 88 – Mattapoisett, Massachusetts, developed as a center for shipbuilding, whaling, and coastal trade in the early 1800s. Congress appropriated $5,000 on March 3, 1837, for a lighthouse at Neds Point, at the north side of the entrance to Mattapoisett’s harbor. It went into service in March 1838. The Coast Guard decommissioned the lighthouse in 1952, and it became the centerpiece of a beautiful park. In 1993, the local Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla adopted the lighthouse. Recently, four Auxiliarists founded the Friends of Neds Point Lighthouse; Sal Giglia and Bill Cody are two of the Auxiliarists who started the organization. Also in this episode: In 2002, a 25-foot-tall faux lighthouse was built on the property of Arnie Andrews and his wife, Velta, in Graham, Washington. This past July 15, a medical alert was triggered at the Andrews home, and a crew from Graham Fire and Rescue immediately showed up. It turned out that there was no medical emergency, but what happened next is pretty special. One of the responders was Andy Faubion, who is interviewed in this episode.
Episode 89 – Admiralty Head’s light station, on the east side a busy passage that leads to Washington’s Puget Sound, went into service in 1861. The lighthouse had be built in a different position in 1903. The new building’s striking architecture is often referred to as “Spanish-style.” It became part of Fort Casey Historical State Park in the early 1960s. Today, the nonprofit group Keepers of Admiralty Head Lighthouse and the Admiralty Head Docents Program preserve and interpret the lighthouse. Wayne Clark is the president of Keepers of Admiralty Head Lighthouse, and Patrick Hussey and Dick Malone are interpretive docents.
Episode 90 –A lighthouse was established in Stonington Harbor, Connecticut, in 1824. In 1840, a new lighthouse was built further back from the eroding shore. Then, a new 25-foot cast-iron lighthouse was erected on a breakwater in Stonington Harbor in 1889, rendering the old lighthouse obsolete. The fortress-like stone lighthouse was acquired by the Stonington Historical Society in 1925. They converted the interior into a six-room museum of local history; it’s considered the oldest lighthouse museum in the U.S. Aimee Newell is the executive director of the Stonington Historical Society.
Jeremy D’Entremont is the author of more than 20 books and hundreds of articles on lighthouses and maritime history. He is the president and historian for the American Lighthouse Foundation and founder of Friends of Portsmouth Harbor Lighthouses, and he has lectured and narrated cruises throughout the Northeast and in other regions. He is also the producer and host of the U.S. Lighthouse Society podcast, “Light Hearted.” He can be emailed at Jeremy@uslhs.org