Wisconsin Lighthouses: A Photographic
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This image of the Devil's Island Lighthouse was captured as I sat patiently and watched the night sky dance with the lighthouse. The night sky at the Apostle Islands is always a spectacular sight. The Apostle Islands is part of a National Lakeshore site protected by the National Park Service. Photo copyright by Joe Garza.
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In 1939, community members started considering a lighthouse at the point to guide boaters into the river. James C. Kimberly provided the funds for the construction in 1944, and the tower was completed in 1945. The base of the tower houses the park's restrooms and covered picnic areas on each side. The tower is an active aid to navigation, and is therefore not open to the public.
Directions: The lighthouse sits in Kimberly Point Park. To get there, from Highway 41, take Main Street east. It will change names to West Wisconsin Street, and then to East Wisconsin Street. Follow this to the end, and make a left onto Lakeshore Ave. Follow Lakeshore Ave. north to the park. The lighthouse sits in the park.Access: Grounds open. Tower closed.
The current tower at the end of the north breakwater started life in 1901 as the north pierhead lighthouse. With the enlarging of the harbor completed in 1910, a new \"pagoda style\" lighthouse would be the first North Breakwater lighthouse. This tower would serve the location until 1930 when numerous harbor improvements took place in Racine. These improvements led to the removal of the north pier and the catwalk leading all the way back to the old Racine Harbor lighthouse. At this time, the pagoda style light was removed, with the replacement being the North Pierhead Lighthouse.
In retrospect, Kewaunee's aspirations to rival Chicago were short-lived. With it's improved rail connections, Manitowoc assumed pre-eminence as Wisconsin's major northern port, and Kewaunee itself deteriorated from it intended brilliance. Keepers of this Light Click Here to see a complete listing of all Kewaunee Pierhead Light keepers compiled by Phyllis L. Tag of Great Lakes Lighthouse Research. Seeing this Light From Highway 42, which runs north/south through Kewaunee, turn east onto Ellis Street. Take Ellis street almost to its' end, and you will find the Kewaunee Police department is the last building on the left. To the west of the police station is a driveway which opens-up to a gravel parking area to the rear of the station. Take this driveway, park behind the station, and walk the pier which is located to the immediate east of the parking area. Reference sources Inventory of Historic Light Stations, National Parks Service, 1994. Photographs from author's personal collection. Wisconsin Lighthouses, A photographic & Historical Guide, Ken & Barb Wardius, 2000 Wisconsin Handbook, Thomas Huhti, 1997 Personal observation at Kewaunee, 09/10/2000. Keeper listings for this light appear courtesy of Great Lakes Lighthouse Research
The United States of America is a federal union of 50 states and a capital district. Located in the western Great Lakes region, the state of Wisconsin has two coastlines. One coastline faces north on Lake Superior and includes the Apostle Islands stretching out into the lake. The other coastline faces east on Lake Michigan. This page includes lighthouses of the Lake Superior coastline; the remaining Wisconsin lighthouses are on the Northeastern Wisconsin and Southeastern Wisconsin pages.
Aids to navigation in northern Wisconsin are maintained by the U.S. Coast Guard Aids to Navigation Team Duluth, located in neighboring Minnesota, but ownership (and sometimes operation) of historic lighthouses has been transferred to local authorities and preservation organizations in most cases. All but one of the historic lighthouses of northern Wisconsin are now owned by National Park Service.
Make sure to walk out onto the pier to get better views of the lighthouse. Be careful when traversing the pier, as the stone walkway can be slippery when wet or icy in the winter. I recommend bringing shoes with good traction for this reason. The best time to photograph the lighthouse is at sunset or sunrise. Be sure to catch the red light flashing from the lighthouse in your photos!
If the weather is nice, head out to the beach just north of the pier for some great relaxing. Also, there is another lighthouse (Sturgeon Bay Canal Light) on the south side of the canal, which you can see to the south.
Sunrise behind the Port Washington,Wisconsin lighthouse over Lake Michigan, It was the first official Fall morning in Wisconsin and the best time of year to photograph the sun rising behind the lighthouse. It is also the time of year that the salmon start to spawn and the fishermen come to the area to try their luck catching them.
Series II dates from about 1868 to 1938 and includes primarily undated mounted albumen and silver gelatin photographic prints of lighthouses, towers, and other components of light stations. Photographs are arranged in three subseries: American Lighthouses, Foreign and U.S. Territorial Lighthouses, and Unidentified Lighthouses. Thereunder photographs are arranged alphabetically by state (or country) and official name. Oversize materials have been filed in box 7. Folder 13 contains an alphabetical index (which probably was received with the collection) to fifty-two lighthouse photographs, only some of which are in this collection.
Most American light stations represented are located along the eastern seaboard of the United States, between Maine and South Carolina. Among these are a group of about thirty mounted photographs of lighthouses located in Maine and Massachusetts which were taken by the Halliday Historic Photograph Co.; these photographs were a gift of the library of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Halliday was a Boston firm which produced architectural and scenic views for commercial sale from the 1890s through the 1930s. Most of the Halliday photographs bear captions and plate numbers printed into the photographs; the verso of each has been labeled with \"Halliday,\" the plate number, and a stamp from the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Other photographs represent lighthouses in California, Michigan, Minnesota, Florida, New Hampshire, Ohio, South Carolina, Vermont, and Wisconsin.
The majority of the photographs in this series are general views of light stations or towers. Also included is a series of photographs documenting the United States Lighthouse Depot (now the National Lighthouse Museum) on Staten Island, New York. The U.S. Lighthouse Depot served as a national headquarters for the Lighthouse Board and as a center for testing new technologies, and building and repairing lighthouses, lightships and other equipment. Folders 31-32 include a group of beach erosion survey photographs taken in 1919 at Barnegat Light Station in New Jersey. A few photographs feature lighthouse keepers or other unidentified individuals; for example an 1884 photograph of the Ida Lewis Rock Lighthouse (formerly Lime Rock) in Rhode Island features Ida Lewis in front of the structure. (A duplicate cyanotype print of this image is available in Series I). The series also includes a set of identical clippings from a March 27, 1936, edition of the New York Daily News regarding a ship which ran aground near Race Rock Light, New York. Two pamphlets outlining a lighthouse cruise from Portland, Maine to New York are available with other oversize materials in Box 7.
The subseries Foreign and U.S. Territorial Lighthouses consists of one photograph by Alfred Camm of Bishop's Rock Light in England, and a group of eighteen photographs of lighthouses in the U.S. Territory of Puerto Rico. Thirteen photographs of unidentified lighthouses are located in folder 51 at the end of this series.
The lighthouses and water intake cribs of Indiana and Chicago Harbor have long eluded lighthouse lovers due to their inaccessibility. Our Southern Lake Michigan tour provides a unique combination of a cruise and bus trip to view these lights along with a number of other tower, pier and breakwater lights between Milwaukee and Muskegon. Add extra nights for sightseeing in Chicago and you have the elements of an unforgettable light-house tour.
Hotel Accommodation: 7 nightsMeals: 7 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 6 dinnersTransport: Airport transfers, coach tours, ferry ticketsOther: Entrance fees to lighthouse and museums 1e1e36bf2d