Marcia Strykowski

Lighthouse Love

lighthouseFor centuries, people around the world have been fascinated by lighthouses. They can be found on dangerous coastlines, islands, and harbors. Before their existence, people lit fires along the shore to guide sailors. One of the very first (and tallest) lighthouses was built in Egypt around 280 BC. The first in America was built in 1716 in Boston Harbor, but was destroyed during the Revolutionary War. The current lighthouse, dating from 1783, is located on Little Brewster Island.

In Bermuda, I climbed all 185 steps of the lighthouse shown in my photograph, above–-what a view from the top (shown below). [117′ tower]
lighthouse view 2A lighthouse features in Amy’s Choice, the sequel to Call Me Amy, and yes, Amy gets her wish to climb to the top. Naturally, in order to write the book, I had to do some research. 🙂 Below are pictures I took of a few of the Maine lighthouses I’ve visited, along with excerpts of their history taken from their websites.

We’ll start with one of my favorite lighthouses: Marshall Point in Port Clyde, ME. [31′ tower] The history of the Marshall Point Light Station goes back to 1831, when Samuel Marshall sold 4 acres of land to the U. S. government for $120. Additional acres were added later to extend the site to 6.5 acres. With a ¼ mile shoreline, it is a nature spot enjoyed by thousands of visitors every year.lighthouse - CopyI noticed in the first picture (which is from way back when I took 35mm slides) the tower top is red, but in my more recent pictures (such as the one below), it’s  black. In the 1994 Forrest Gump scene, where he runs up to this same lighthouse, the top is black, so it must have been painted over before that time—probably during the late 1980s.lighthouse shipNext is Nubble Light (or Cape Neddick Light Station) in York, ME. [41′ tower]
Nubble lighthouse 2013In 1874 President Rutherford B. Hayes appropriated the sum of $15,000 to build a lighthouse on this “Nub” of land.    On July 1, 1879, construction was completed on what at the time was known as the Knubble Lighthouse where a 4th order light began to protect our men and women on the sea.
me photo shootA wee bit chilly that day…
Next up is Portland Head Light in Cape Elizabeth, ME [80′ tower]
Portland Light 2In 1776, the new Town of Cape Elizabeth posted a guard of eight soldiers at Portland Head to warn citizens of coming British attacks.

In 1787, the General Court of Massachusetts provided $750 to begin construction of a lighthouse. In 1790, when the United States Government took over the responsibility of all lighthouses, Congress appropriated $1,500 for its completion. The original tower measured 72′ from base to lantern deck and was lit with 16 whale oil lamps. It was first lit on January 10, 1791.
Portland LightAnd last but not least, Bass Harbor Light located in Acadia National Park. [32′ tower]
Bass Harbor LightThe lighthouse was built of brick in 1858 on a stone foundation, stands 56 feet above mean high water and is accessible by car off Route 102A.
2013 Blue biz - CopyDo you have a favorite lighthouse?

50 Comments

  1. I too love Lighthouses. Some great pictures here. Happy New Year!!

    Like

  2. slochman

    Great post!

    Like

  3. Bette Norton

    I enjoyed learning the history and seeing the beautiful photos that accompanied each lighthouse you posted here! I love to visit Lighthouses and have been to all three that are in Maine. My favorite is Marshall Point where I have visited since I was old enough to walk. My husband and I go each year to visit the Marshall Point Light House and their little museum. I enjoyed reading about the lighthouse and its keeper in your book, Amy’s Choice. Thank you for another great post!

    Like

  4. I love lighthouses too, and enjoyed this – especially as I have been to three of them! Gibbs Hill in Bermuda (which has had a much needed coat of white paint since your picture), Bass Harbor and Portland Head. Happy New Year!

    Like

    • Oh, wonderful! Glad to hear Gibbs Hill got a fresh coat of paint. Have a wonderful new year, Anabel!

      Like

      • Thanks Marcia! Gibbs Hill will make an appearance on my travel blog in the New Year – we were just in Bermuda last month.

        Like

  5. Amazing post! I am fascinated with lighthouses. My favorite one to climb is Absecon Lighthouse. 228 steps!

    Like

    • Oh, that’s a tall one. I’ve never been to Absecon, but just looked it up. Thanks for adding it to my radar!

      Like

      • You’re so welcome! If you ever get the chance to visit Absecon Lighthouse, do so. You will love it. When you have a moment please check out my site By The Dawn Of The Light. I have been writing about my visits to Absecon and other lighthouses on there. http://bythedawnofthelight.com

        Like

        • Will do. I was just searching for your site, so thanks for adding it. Your name clicks to a wrong address.

          Like

          • Terrific. Thank you. And thank you for letting me know about it going to the wrong address. Trying to fix that now. Appreciate it!

            Liked by 1 person

            • Just to let you know, the words are correct now, but the dot is spelled out, so it still doesn’t link. Your can also add it to your gravatar which makes things easy.

              Like

            • Ok. Thank you so much! Still getting used to this Word Press!

              Like

  6. I used to do a presentation about Lighthouse Keepers and their wives. We have much history here in the Chesapeake Bay region of Maryland. There are some great children’s books about lighthouses and women who helped “man” them. My favorite is about Abbie Burgess!

    Like

    • How interesting. I don’t know too much about Maryland and I’ll have to check out the Abbie Burgess book, too. Thanks!

      Like

  7. mirkabreen

    Lighthouses, so evocative of the journey home, a la Ulysses… You have many more on your coast. I’d love to see how and if they are still used, and lit at night.

    Like

    • They certainly do evoke a romantic notion of coming home, nothing like the sound of a foghorn deep in the night. I’d say most lighthouses, at least the ones I’m familiar with, are still in operation today.

      Like

  8. Ashley

    Beautiful lighthouses! Your pictures are great and I like knowing more about these lighthouses!

    Like

  9. My father loves lighthouses, has a million different versions in his home!

    Like

  10. Great post, Marcia!

    Like

  11. Hi, thanks so much for liking my “ About “ page and for following my blog at: http://lovelyseasonscomeandgo.wordpress.com. Your blog is amazing and so I will follow your blog too. Have a great day. Betty

    Like

  12. The views are gorgeous. Although I’ve admired lighthouses from afar, I’ve never been in one. Must remedy that …

    Like

    • Might be a good thing for your 2016 to-do list. Happy New Year, Vijaya!

      Like

  13. I have always liked lighthouses- but I have never been to the top of one. Now I have something for my list in 2016. I like that each lighthouse is unique and I really enjoyed all of your pictures and background information. Thanks for sharing.

    Wishing you a very happy 2016!

    Like

    • The differences between lighthouses are quite interesting. Thanks, Stephanie, and Happy New Year!

      Like

  14. Wonderful pictures of lighthouses! Some of my favorite lighthouses are on the Great Lakes. One that I like is Split Rock Lighthouse on Lake Superior.

    Like

    • I’m not too familiar with the Great Lakes area. I looked up Split Rock, looks very majestic perched high on the cliff!

      Like

  15. What a fun post Marcia!! Such a beautiful series of photos– and packed with fascinating information. We have fewer lighthouses here on the west coast– so it was grand to get in on the ones you’ve seen… Happy New Year!! Hope you have a wonderful year ahead… xo

    Like

  16. I am also a fan of crisp white lighthouses perched above rocky shores. 🙂 My favorite is at Cape Byron in Australia. Please come and visit my blog and take a look.

    Like

  17. I’ve never been in a lighthouse- though I totally want to someday! Though wait…the church I grew up in (The Lighthouse Tabernacle) had a lighthouse in front (big sized and everything). I’ve been in that- does that count? 😉

    Like

  18. Oh, these are gorgeous! And I don’t just mean the lighthouses. It’s the sky, the clouds, the trees, the rocks, and the houses, too. I don’t think I’ve been to a lighthouse. The closest I’ve ever been to one is reading ‘To the Lighthouse,’ lol.

    Happy 2016, Marcia!

    Like

    • Thanks so much, Claudine. I’m glad you enjoyed the pictures. Happy new year!

      Like

  19. Nice post 🙂

    Like

  20. A visual feast, Marcia, I am captivated by anything to do with the ocean. I don’t have enough first hand experiences with lighthouses, but must say I do like the old one on Point Loma in San Diego!

    Like

    • I’m not familiar with Point Loma, I’ll have to look it up. I love the ocean, too. 🙂

      Like

Please leave a comment--I'd love to hear from you!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: