Saginaw River Rear Range Light
August 6, 2008
Stacy says that she took this photo on a boat tour of the Saginaw River and that access is very limited. It’s one of a number of photos in her Michigan Lighthouses set. She has also placed it on a map.
Terry Pepper’s page on the Saginaw River Rear Range Light brings the usual 110% of awesome with historical photos and a complete history of the lighthouse that explains (in part):
Eleventh District Engineer Major Godfrey Weitzel’s design for the combined rear range tower and dwelling was unique. Consisting of a large elevated concrete base supporting a combined brick dwelling and tower, the swampy ground in the chosen site first required the driving of timber piles deep into the ground to provide a solid foundation on which timber forms for the concrete base could be erected and filled. Atop this concrete foundation, a square two-story Cream City brick keeper’s dwelling 26′ 6″ in plan was constructed. Integrated into the northwest corner of the dwelling, a tapered 53′ tall square tower with double walls housed a set of prefabricated cast iron spiral stairs. Winding from the cellar to the lantern, these stairs also serving as the only means of access to the first and second floors by way of landings on each floor, each outfitted with tightly fitting arch-topped iron doors designed to stem the spread of fire between floors. A timber deck supported by timber columns encircled the dwelling at the first floor level, providing easy and dry access to all sides of the structure. The living quarters consisted of a kitchen, parlor and oil storage room on the first floor, and three bedrooms above. The tower was capped with a square iron gallery, supported by five cast iron corbels on each of its four sides. An octagonal cast iron lantern was installed at its center, with a fixed white Fourth Order Fresnel lens placed at a focal plane of 61 feet.