Friday, January 18, 2013

Grosse Point Lighthouse

Just outside of Chicago, IL, in idyllic Evanston, a beacon stands overlooking Lake Michigan.
Grosse Point Lighthouse was built in 1873 to stop ships from wrecking as they approached Chicago's shores in the at-parts shallow waters. 

Photography by the talented Mia K

The optic lens is the largest used on the Great Lakes and sheds light as far as 21 miles. The first beam was sent out on March 1, 1874. The original setup included keepers' quarters and a passageway to the fuel storage. Later on, two fog signal buildings and a separate fuel supply facility were added.

It took three keepers and a day laborer to keep things running. To be a lighthouse keeper -such a romantic notion!
In 1923, when electricity was added, the lighthouse could do with just two keepers.
But after the installation of a photoelectric device in 1934, no more staff was needed. 
(Maybe a pretend keeper could live there  -you know, like they do on historic farms!)

The pathways are enchanting. We were tempted to stroll about for the rest of the day.

So perfectly poetic!

The Light Station grounds are open for free-of-charge looking all year. 
For a small fee tours can be arranged from May through October, and by the Park District June-September on Saturdays and Sundays. 
As part of the tour why not climb the 141 steps to the top of the light tower, where you can touch the sky!

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