On September 20th way back in 1873, the beacon of the the St. Helena Island Lighthouse was lit for the first time. CMU’s Clarke Historical Library explains:
Because several ships had been wrecked on the dangerous shoals near the island of St. Helena in 1872, Congress authorized construction of a lighthouse at the southeast tip of the island. Since September 20, 1873, the beacon of the St. Helena Lighthouse has helped guide vessels safely through the Straits of Mackinac.
The light was first automated in 1922 and the modern lighthouse uses solar batteries to power the light.
In 1988, the lighthouse was added to the national Register of Historic Places. Recently restored to excellent condition by the Great Lakes Lighthouse Keepers Association, the St. Helena Island Lighthouse continues to light up the Straights and provide a glimpse of the golden age of the Great Lakes’ lights.
Definitely check the Clarke Historical Library out – some great Michigan history there for sure!
Joel took this photo back in 2014 on a Lighthouse Cruise with Shepler Ferry / Great Lakes Lighthouse Keepers Association. See more shots in his Lighthouse Cruise 6/16/2014 gallery.