Wind Point Lighthouse

imageWind Point Lighthouse

We visited here, hoping to climb a bunch of steps for a cool view… Nope. Denied. Oh well. Maybe next time.

(From the website)

In 1997, the U.S. Coast Guard transferred the Lighthouse to the Village of Wind Point, requiring the Village to maintain it as a historic site and landmark, but kept the responsibility of the light itself. The Village of Wind Point is responsible for the care of the Lighthouse and the grounds surrounding it.
The Friends of the Wind Point Lighthouse, a 501c3 non-profit organization, was formed in 1999 with a mission to educate the public about the history of this local treasure.

  • The Wind Point Lighthouse is one of the oldest and tallest still operating on Lake Michigan.
  • The Lighthouse was built in 1880 and was designed by Orlando Metcalfe Poe who had served in the Civil War as a Brigadier General. After the war, he served as engineer secretary of the Lighthouse Board and was in charge of lighthouse construction. It was lit for the first time on November 15, 1880.
  • The Fog Horn Building shows the original design with the huge fog horns aimed toward the Lake. The fog signals could be heard 10 miles out into Lake Michigan.
  • The Fresnel Lens created the distinctive flashing light using dozens of glass prisms to bend and focus the light which made for an immensely powerful light. The original lens can be seen in the old Coast Guard Keepers Quarters.


    Note the dandelion growing right on the wall!!

  • A mechanism of weights, cables and pulleys rotated the enormous Fresnel Lens to create the flashing that navigators on the Lake recognized.
  • Fuel for the light had to be carried up the 144 iron steps and the Keeper or his Assistants had to make that climb daily. About 270 gallons were used in 1881.
  • The Keeper or his Assistants had to clean the Lens every day so that it sparkled.
  • There were 7 Head Keepers and more than 30 Assistant Keepers of the Wind Point Lighthouse from 1880 – 1964 when the light was automated.



Β© Ilex – Midwestern Plant Girl

58 thoughts on “Wind Point Lighthouse

      • I did a woodcarving on a huge piece or redwood for a lighthouse society up in New York years ago.
        It was a commissioned piece. And I also did one of the Statue of Liberty. ( that took awhile. )

        Liked by 1 person

          • I looked but didnt see any in the album.
            We do have some photos in the closet I will have to look at.
            (You can tell we love our photos…lol. )
            He made some cool things for people. One piece I really loved was a segmented circle. It was made from either maple or sycamore, I don’t remember.
            It was big. Almost knee high. And perfect.
            The people who commissioned the work wanted a circle, pyramid, and a square as a base for a glass top living room table. They collected art. A lot.
            They wanted these pieces colored red, blue and a yellow.
            I wanted to cry when they wanted that circle painted..argghhh!!!! It’s wood!!!! And it was beautiful as it was.
            Personally I would have clear coated it. We liked shellac. It is better as a finish.
            But…that’s what they wanted and that’s what they got. They loved it. I’m glad.
            I think we may have a photo in the box in the closet…I hope. It was pretty cool. And I loved the concept.


            • Your project sounded pretty cool!!
              My artist husband complains a bit about that. That if a client wants a piece done by an artist, they shouldn’t be able to dictate all of the details. It’s the artist’s eye for detail that the client is buying, not theirs. If they wanted to make their own piece, then they should do it πŸ˜‰


    • My husbands ancestors built two in long island. And one I think in the Carolina’s. They still stand.
      He is (still ) working on a exact replica of one of them on Montauk. To scale too. I talked to them and they sent me all we needed to know about the specs. And it will have a revolving light too.
      His ancestors also were responsible for many other buildings. They owned a lot of N.Y. and Manhattan. La Grange ( a house which president Hamilton lived in. )
      The city hall of N.Y. and some other N.Y. buildings. And he designed the federal style building. He was a architect back then. Apparently well known.
      I used to do a lot of genealogy. I can get lost for hours looking and reading.
      I like learning how they lived, all the family things written.
      I think mine crawled out from under a rock. πŸ˜‰ Except Edmund Burke.
      What makes me sad is I have seen so many tin type photos just laying in a basket for sale in resale shops.
      That’s someone’s family there. Was….

      Liked by 1 person

      • Wow! What a rich history! That’s pretty cool that you were able to trace your history that far back. I’ve never looked into mine. I know a little bit from when my mom looked into it, well before Internet or I’m related to the Red Baron. She hit a wall on her side with the whole “boat immigrants” all getting the boat captain’s last name. I don’t have children, so my past never interested me much. Maybe I’ll do it when I’m retired and have lots of time on my hands… πŸ˜‰

        Liked by 1 person

        • I’ve traced his back to Scotland, way back. They did not like the tax collector that much and especially when they were giving a poor widow a bad time on the taxes.
          Eventually it seemed many wound up in Dublin and then on a boat to the United States.
          Many people on the ships could not even write. Some just put a X for their name. Which makes it really hard on people doing genealogy. Or court records were in a fire. The building burned. (That is my dead end on my grandmother. )
          Census records are really good. And also the Latter day saints have quite a collection on people. Many people….
          Over in Ireland the church leaders kept pretty good records.


  1. Lady was that the one in the Carolinas? It was interesting to watch!
    We went to the Ponce De Leon one in Florida when we lived there. I think it had a out 265 steps?
    It was awesome.!!
    And yes..I love the fresnal lenses. Very expensive then to replace.
    When I worked with glass I could make things like this.
    I worked in a stained glass place and also made bevel glass from flat glass. It was cool. The wheels were huge and you had to hang onto the pieces or you would lose a piece …or cut yourself too.
    I really miss doing glasswork. And woodworking…:(

    Liked by 1 person

  2. When I did stained glass, my daughter was a little over two months old. I had ran her drunk worthess father off back to his mothers.
    So I had to get a job.
    I sat down one day and started going through the yellow pages thinking what would I like to do….
    I saw a ad for stained glass. Yes, that’s it! I want to learn that. So I called and he said he could use another person. Cool….
    Before long I worked my way up and had the keys to open up. He liked my work and said I was even better than him.??? That surprised me. He said I could be a master glassman in a few months at the rate I was going.
    But….things didn’t go right. I had to eventually go back to my parents home. 😦 I miss that place.
    It was really fun and interesting.
    I have my stained glass equipment in storage , still….
    Btw, I looked I Hobby Lobby a few days ago. They had small bags of stained glass chips or pieces for $4.99 a bag! Wow…thats kinda expensive…
    I know I have some chips from moving.
    Maybe I will put some pics on the kind of abstract lighthouses and stained glass we did on my site.
    I took other pictures of pictures in our photo album.


  3. Sounds really cool to me!
    I love paperweights too. It sounds like a fun place to go visit!
    Murano glass is gorgeous. I wish now I hadn’t sold some of my pieces. Some were turquoise blue. Big and heavy. I still have some glass. Some ruby red glass. I will probably sell those..


  4. Some do not understand that things come out a bit differently sometimes. Especially if there is more than one of the same thing.
    The project was interesting, and…it paid well. πŸ™‚


Time to fire-up the chair-to-keyboard interface!!!

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

You are commenting using your 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