Gay Head Lighthouse stands in one of the most picturesque locations in New England, on top of the 130-foot-tall multicolored clay cliffs at the western edge of the island of Martha’s Vineyard, just south of Cape Cod in Massachusetts. The Town of Aquinnah took ownership of the lighthouse in February 2015. As of that month, the Save the Gay Head Light Committee had raised $2.5 million toward its goal of the $3 million needed to finance a move of the lighthouse away from the edge of the rapidly eroding cliff. The move to safer ground was completed in June 2015.
Liz Witham and Ken Wentworth of Martha’s Vineyard founded Film-Truth Productions in 2003. Their work has won many awards. Their film Keepers of the Light, about the history of Gay Head Lighthouse leading up to its historic move, was years in the making.
It will be shown on public television stations around the country starting this month. In this interview, Liz and Ken talk about the making of the film, about their lives in the community of Aquinnah, and about the unique history of Gay Head Lighthouse in a community that is largely populated by Wampanoag Indians.
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