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Lighthouse News of the Week – November 13, 2020

Mission Point Lighthouse (MI) Given $10,000 for Restoration Project

Michigan’s Mission Point Lighthouse has gotten a little help from the Old Mission Historical Society for their restoration project. The historical society presented a $10,000 check to the lighthouse staff to help with restoration of the shutters. The lighthouse manager says the shutters were the final touch to their 150th anniversary restoration.


Mission Point Lighthouse, USLHS photo by Tom Tag
Mission Point Lighthouse, USLHS photo by Tom Tag

“We had several projects that we’re gonna do this year for the 150th anniversary, and the shutters we weren’t sure about,” said lighthouse manager Ginger Schultz. “Since we received the check, we were able to get that done and it’s been a nice final project with all the other restoration projects that we’ve had out here.”

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Whaleback Lighthouse (ME) receives some TLC

Some good things happened at Whaleback Lighthouse in Kittery, Maine, before the work season concluded this year. The Friends of Portsmouth Harbor Lighthouses (FPHL), a chapter of the American Lighthouse Foundation, was able to contract with the J.B. Leslie Company to carry out important maintenance at the offshore Whaleback Light, Kittery, Maine, in September 2020.

Whaleback Lighthouse, photo by Jeremy D’Entremont.

The work included prepping, priming, and repainting the iron lantern, sealing the control joints along the exterior gallery deck, resealing glass panes at distinct locations and installing a fiberglass grating to span the gap between the old fog signal base and the tower’s entryway. The previous access platform was washed away during a winter storm.

The water around Whaleback Light is seemingly always agitated, if not downright nasty.  A landing at the site is further complicated by the lack of a docking system and irregular, slippery rock and ledge. The J.B. Leslie Company had to cope with these factors as they carried out the maintenance project. In fact, one day they went to the lighthouse, but had to turn around and go back due to the rough seas around Whaleback.

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Friends of Ned’s Point Lighthouse formed in Mattapoisett, MA

A new organization, Friends of Ned’s Point Lighthouse, has been started for the restoration and preservation of Ned’s Point Lighthouse in Mattapoisett, Massachusetts. This will be accomplished through fundraisers and the sale of lighthouse-related gifts, educational materials, and clothing promoting educational awareness, volunteerism, and membership benefits.

Neds Point Lighthouse. Photo by Jeremy D’Entremont.

The Board of Directors is directly involved with the United States Coast Guard Auxiliary’s Flotilla 63, who through a merger with USCG AUX Flotilla 67, has adopted Ned’s Point Lighthouse.

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Listen to an interview with Bill Cody and Sal Giglia of Friends of Ned’s Point Lighthouse on the USLHS podcast, Light Hearted:

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Amazing photos of Split Rock Lighthouse (MN) lighted in honor of the Edmund Fitzgerald

Split Rock Lighthouse’s beacon was lit on November 10, 2020 to commemorate the 45th anniversary of the sinking of the freighter SS Edmund Fitzgerald and honor the 29 lives that were lost.

Photo by Hayes Scriven

Click here to see a gallery of amazing photos

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Emergency loads of big rock to protect Round Island Lighthouse (MI)

With state approval in hand and an anonymous donor covering the bulk of the cost, the volunteers who care for the historic Round Island Lighthouse near Mackinac Island are now racing against the approaching winter to expand the riprap rock barrier that protects the structure from ice and wave action. This week a tentative agreement was reached with a marine services company out of Escanaba to do the emergency ice protection work.

Round Island Lighthouse. U.S. Lighthouse Society photo.

The recent high water years on the Great Lakes have been a concern for this lighthouse’s caretakers, who don’t want to see a repeat of the 1972 damage when storms and high waves washed away a side of the building, exposing it to the elements. That damage was later repaired. By placing more massive stones in the water just off the structure’s base, a better barrier can be created to prevent the winter ice and spring storms from damaging the base.

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Listen an interview with Matt McMullen of the Round Island Lighthouse Preservation Society on the USLHS podcast, Light Hearted:

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Tortugas Harbor Lighthouse (FL) Is Being Restored For $4.5 Million

Tortugas Harbor Lighthouse has been standing at Fort Jefferson in the dry Tortugas for 144 years. Officials at the Dry Tortugas National Park are spending $4.5 million dollars to repair it. It will happen in three phases and take a year to complete.

Tortugas Harbor Lighthouse. National Park Service photo.
Tortugas Harbor Lighthouse. National Park Service photo.

Crews will take apart the lighthouse’s iron skeleton piece by piece and take it to mainland Florida where the parts will be repaired. Once that’s done, the structure will be taken back and reassembled.

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Old lighthouse at Pondicherry, India, under restoration

Pondicherry (or Puducherry), a French colonial settlement in India until 1954, is now a Union Territory town bounded by the southeastern Tamil Nadu state. A lighthouse was constructed in Pondicherry in the nineteenth century by the French rulers. A new lighthouse was constructed in 20th century by the government of India.

English: The new lighthouse at Pondichery is seen in the background, the old lighthouse is seen in the foreground. Creative Commons photo by Dr. Ajay B. MD.

The old lighthouse is now being restored. The plan is to restore the lighthouse by around October next year. The lighthouse will get new rafters, beams and plastering.

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$1.5 million dedicated to preserve Tchefuncte River lighthouse (LA)

More than $1.5 million that will be used to protect and preserve the lighthouse that marks where the Tchefuncte River meets Lake Pontchartrain in Mandeville, Louisiana. The money comes from the Gulf of Mexico Energy Security Act, or GOMESA.

Tchefuncte River Lighthouse, Louisiana. Photo by Sharon Mills.

The project calls for the construction of a bulkhead around the light house as well as a rock breakwater to protect the land from erosion. Plans also call for a dock and pier to be added to the location.

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U.S. Lighthouse Society News is produced by the U.S. Lighthouse Society to support lighthouse preservation, history, education and research.

If you have items of interest to the lighthouse community and its supporters, please email them to Jeremy D’Entremont at Jeremy@uslhs.org

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