Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Happy National Lighthouse Day!

Yes... you read that right... Today - August 7th is National Lighthouse Day!

 The text for the original 1789 act...

It was on this day in 1789, that Congress approved an Act for the establishment and support of lighthouse, beacons, buoys and public piers. In Celebration of the 200th Anniversary of the signing of the Act and the commissioning of the first Federal lighthouse, Congress passed a resolution which designated August 7, 1989 as National Lighthouse Day.

So I figured it was only appropriate to take a moment to celebrate my favorite big red lighthouse... found in Grand Haven!   My lighthouse love has grown over the years, but it all started here in Grand Haven as each summer visit didn't seem to really begin until we had taken our first walk out to the lighthouse.  I can only imagine the number of photos my family has taken of this lighthouse and pier over the years, the number of hours my dad and family spent fishing off this pier and watching storms roll in off the lake - yet each time I am back in town I find myself taking more photos!

I guess it is just in my blood, Grandma Ruth had several photos taken at the lighthouse in her prized album of her years in Grand Haven, like this one from a winter walk with friends when she was a teenager. 

 Grand Haven had its first lighthouse built on the beach in 1839 which was complete with a 5 room cottage for the light house keeper.  This lighthouse faced erosion issues and collapsed in 1852 leaving Grand Haven without a light house for the next three years while a new one was built on the bluff above the beach in 1855 where it guided seamen on Lake Michigan for the next 50 years.  The current pier the lighthouse sits on was completed in 1893, but it wasn't until 1905 that the 52 foot steel lighthouse was finished and put to use.  If you have been in Grand Haven this summer you have likely seen the bubble looking structure that lighthouse is enclosed in as restoration and painting takes place.

Check out the Grand Haven Lighthouse Conservancy  to learn more of the history, preservation and to volunteer or donate to help keep this Grand Haven favorite looking its best!
A lot may change over the years, but what a gift it is to see generation after generation enjoying this Michigan landmark!

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