Light Hearted

Light Hearted podcast – Index page 30

Episode 146Port Clyde, one of the villages that comprise the town of St. George in Midcoast Maine, became a busy port in the 1800s with granite quarries, tide mills for sawing timber, shipbuilding facilities, and fish canning businesses. To help mariners entering the harbor or passing to the west into Muscongus Bay, Congress appropriated funds for a light station at Marshall Point in 1831 and a rubblestone lighthouse tower was completed in the following year. The 31-foot brick and granite lighthouse that stands today was built in 1857. The first floor now houses the Marshall Point Lighthouse Museum, with exhibits on local history as well as life at the light station. Nat Lyon is the director and curator of the Marshall Point Lighthouse and Museum.

Episode 147Stannard Rock Lighthouse in Michigan was nicknamed by its keepers “the loneliest place in the world.” Coast Guard keepers called it “Stranded Rock.” Located about 24 miles from the nearest shore on Lake Superior, it’s the most isolated light station in the United States. The light began service on the Fourth of July in 1882. In 2015, ownership was transferred to the Superior Watershed Partnership, an award-winning Great Lakes nonprofit organization. The lighthouse now serves as a climate research station. Carl Lindquist is the founder and executive director of the Superior Watershed Partnership. Frederick Stonehouse is the author of more than thirty books including the best-selling The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald

Episode 148The Martha’s Vineyard Museum in Massachusetts was originally incorporated in the 1920s as the Dukes County Historical Society. Realizing the need for more and better collection storage space, improved access, and additional space for exhibitions and public programming, the Museum purchased the former 1895 Marine Hospital in Vineyard Haven in 2011. The museum opened in its new location in 2019. The museum’s “Flashes of Brilliance” exhibit chronicles the history of lighthouses and navigation around the Island. Set in the middle of the exhibit and spanning two floors like a suspended jewel is the magnificent first-order Fresnel Lens from Gay Head Lighthouse. The guest in this episode, Bonnie Stacy, is the chief curator of the Martha’s Vineyard Museum.

Episode 149The Isles of Shoals are a cluster of nine islands located several miles off the seacoast of New Hampshire and southern Maine. A lighthouse on White Island — the southernmost of the island group — went into service in early 1821. A new 58-foot brick lighthouse tower was built on White Island in 1859. Sue Reynolds, a seventh-grade science teacher at the North Hampton School on the New Hampshire seacoast, started a nonprofit organization called the Lighthouse Kids to save the lighthouse. The effort led to a 2005 restoration. There are four guests in this episode. Sue Reynolds was a public school educator for 40 years and for more than 20 years was the captain of the tour boat Uncle Oscar. Nancy Frye Bergeron is a longtime resident of the New Hampshire Seacoast who serves on the board of directors of the Lighthouse Kids. Ed Latta was a Coast Guard light keeper on White Island in the early 1980s. And Kyla Cunningham was a Lighthouse Kid circa 2002 and 2003.

Episode 150St. Simons is part of a cluster of barrier islands located off the southeastern Georgia coast. The original lighthouse on St. Simons was a 75-foot-tall tower that was built in 1810. The 104-foot-tall brick tower that stands today was completed in 1872. In 2004, ownership of the lighthouse was transferred to the Coastal Georgia Historical Society. Sandy White is the education director for the Coastal Georgia Historical Society and its museums. Tybee island is a barrier island and coastal community east of Savannah, Georgia. An unlighted day beacon was established on Tybee Island in 1736, and there’s been an active lighthouse since 1791. After the light’s automation in 1987, the Tybee Island Historical Society spent 12 years working toward a restoration of the lighthouse tower. Sarah Jones is the executive director of the Tybee Island Historical Society. William Rawlings is the author of Lighthouses of the Georgia Coast, published earlier this year.

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