Lighthouses of the United States: Michigan's Eastern Lower Peninsula

The U.S. state of Michigan comes in two parts: the Lower Peninsula (between Lakes Huron and Michigan) and the Upper Peninsula (between Lakes Michigan and Superior). Putting the two together, the state has an astonishingly long coastline, so it is not surprising that Michigan has more lighthouses than any other U.S. state, by quite a large margin. The Directory has information on more than 130 sites.

This lighthouse heritage is well recognized. Michigan is the only state that supports lighthouse preservation with a program of annual grants from the state to local preservation groups. All over the state, volunteers are working hard to save and restore lighthouses. There is a state preservation society, the Michigan Lighthouse Conservancy, and the Great Lakes Lighthouse Keepers Association is also based in the state.

This page lists lighthouses on the east coast of the Lower Peninsula, including Lake Huron, Saginaw Bay, the St. Clair and Detroit Rivers, and Lake St. Clair. There's another page for the west coast (Lake Michigan) and others for the eastern and western Upper Peninsula.

Aids to navigation in Michigan are maintained by the U.S. Coast Guard Ninth District, but ownership (and sometimes operation) of historic lighthouses has been transferred to local authorities and preservation organizations in many cases.

ARLHS numbers are from the ARLHS World List of Lights. Along the Canadian border, CCG numbers are from the List of Lights, Buoys, and Fog Signals of Fisheries and Oceans Canada. USCG numbers are from Volume VII of the United States Coast Guard Light List.

General Sources
Seeing the Lights: The Lighthouses of Michigan
A wonderful site by Terry Pepper, with fine photos, accounts of recent visits to many of the lighthouses, and extensive historical information.
Michigan Lighthouses
Excellent photos and information posted by Kraig Anderson.
Lighthouses of the Great Lakes
Maintained by Neil Schultheiss, this very fine site has excellent photos and accounts for most of the state's lighthouses.
Lighthouses in Michigan, United States
Aerial photos posted by Marinas.com.
Lake Huron Lighthouses
Photos by C.W. Bash.
Lighthouses of the Great Lakes
Photos available from Wikimedia.
Detroit River Lights
Photos taken in August 2007 and posted by Noah Greenia.
National Maritime Inventory - Michigan
Inventory of Michigan lighthouse data.
Coast Guard Lighthouses - Michigan
Historic photos and notes, posted by the U.S. Coast Guard Historian's office.
Leuchttürme USA auf historischen Postkarten
Historic postcard images posted by Klaus Huelse.
Michigan Lighthouses: Lake Erie, Detroit River, and Lake St. Clair and Lake Huron
Historic postcard images posted by Michel Forand.
Great Lakes Lighthouse Keepers Association
GLLKA encourages lighthouse preservation throughout the Great Lakes states, but it is best known for its work preserving the Round Island and St. Helena Island Lights in the Straits of Mackinac area. The association has an excellent blog.
Michigan Lighthouse Conservancy
This organization is dedicated to the preservation of lighthouses and life saving stations throughout the state.
Great Lakes Lighthouse Festival
Based in Alpena, the festival is held annually in mid October and supports preservation efforts, especially for lighthouses of northwest Lake Huron and the Mackinac Straits area.
Michigan Lighthouse Fund
A non-profit organization, the fund channels state grants and private donations to support Michigan lighthouses.

New Presque Isle Light
New Presque Isle Light, Presque Isle, October 2004
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Larry Myhre

Spectacle Reef Light
Spectacle Reef Light, Lake Huron, March 2009
Wikimedia public domain photo by U.S. Coast Guard

Cheboygan County (South Channel) Lighthouses
Note: The Straits of Mackinac (pronounced "mackinaw") connect Lake Huron on the east and Lake Michigan on the west, separating Michigan's Upper and Lower Peninsulas. Bois Blanc Island divides the eastern part of the strait into the North Channel and South Channel. The Mackinac Bridge, completed in 1957, carries the I-75 expressway across the narrowest passage of the strait near Mackinaw City.
* Cheboygan Crib
1884. Inactive since 1984. 25 ft (7.5 m) octagonal cast iron tower with lantern and gallery. Tower painted white, gallery gray, lantern roof red. Nearby on the pierhead is an active light (focal plane 25 ft (7.5 m); red flash every 4 s) on a white D9 tower. Eric Rae's photo is at right, Anderson's page for the lighthouse has several photos, Skip Barnes also has a fine 2007 photo, and Bing has a satellite view. This light was maintained by keepers from the Cheboygan Range station. The Coast Guard has a historic photo of the lighthouse at its original location on a crib off the entrance to the Cheboygan River, and Forand has a historic postcard view. Deactivated in 1984, the lighthouse was was leaning dangerously before its relocation onshore in 1987. In fall 2001, GLLKA volunteers Dick Moehl and Sandy Planisek painted and refurbished the tower. In 2003, the city discovered it did not actually own the lighthouse when the General Services Administration declared it to be excess federal property. Steps were quickly taken to get clear title. Located at the foot of the breakwater on the west side of the river mouth at the end of Huron Street in downtown Cheboygan. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed except for an occasional open house. Owner/site manager: City of Cheboygan (Gordon Turner Park). ARLHS USA-160; USCG 7-11800.
** Cheboygan River Range Front
1880. Active; focal plane 45 ft (13.5 m); continuous red light. Approx. 40 ft (12 m) square cylindrical wood tower attached church-style to 1-1/2 story wood keeper's house; a red locomotive-style lamp and a large red-striped daymark are mounted on the front of the tower. Building painted white. The circular cast iron oil house is also preserved. Anderson's page has good photos, a 2012 closeup photo is available, and Google has a satellite view. The building, which formerly housed local offices of the Coast Guard and the Fish and Wildlife Service, was declared surplus by the federal government. In December 2003 the Great Lakes Lightkeepers Association received access to the building to begin restoration, and ownership was transferred formally to GLLKA on June 4, 2004. In 2005 the state granted $14,000 for a pre-restoration engineering study of the building, and in May the lighthouse opened for guided tours. In 2009 the lantern and gallery were restored. Funds are being raised for a complete restoration, estimated to cost about $700,000. Located on the Cheboygan River at First and Water Streets in downtown Cheboygan. Site open, building and tower open to guided tours Friday, Saturday, and Sunday from Memorial Day (late May) through Labor Day (early September). Owner/site manager: Great Lakes Lightkeepers Association. ARLHS USA-162; USCG 7-11790.
* Cheboygan River Range Rear (2?)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 75 ft (23 m); continuous red light. 80 ft (24.5 m) square cylindrical steel skeletal tower with gallery; the front of the tower carries a large rectangular daymark painted red with a white vertical stripe. C.M. Hanchey has a closeup photo, Pepper has a photo, and Google has a satellite view. The original lighthouse was replaced by a skeletal tower in 1900, but we don't know if that is the present tower. Located 1115 ft (340 m) west southwest of the front light. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS USA-163; USCG 11795.
Cheboygan Crib Light
Cheboygan Crib Light, Cheboygan, March 2007
Wikimedia Creative Commons photo by Eric Rae
Fourteen Foot Shoal
1930. Active; focal plane 55 ft (17 m); white light occulting every 4 s. 55 ft (17 m) round steel tower with lantern and gallery, rising from the center of a 1-story workhouse and fog signal building; solar-powered 250 mm lens. Lighthouse painted white, lantern roof red. Fog horn (blast every 15 s) when needed. A 2007 photo is available, Anderson's page features good aerial photos, the Coast Guard has a historic photo, and Bing has a satellite view. The lighthouse was never manned; it was operated by remote control from Poe Reef (see below). In 2002 it was painted and refurbished by the crew of the Coast Guard cutter Mackinaw. Located on a shoal off the east side of the entrance to Cheboygan Harbor. Visible from Cheboygan Crib Light and from Lighthouse Point in Cheboygan State Park. Accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed. Owner/site manager: U.S. Coast Guard. ARLHS USA-306; USCG 7-11765.
[Cheboygan Main]
1859. Inactive since about 1930. Demolished by the Coast Guard during the 1940s, this was a "schoolhouse" lighthouse, similar to the Pottawatomie and Port Washington Lights in Wisconsin. The Coast Guard has a historic photo. Only the foundation of the building remains; Bing has a satellite view. Located at Lighthouse Point on the east side of Cheboygan harbor. Accessible by a hiking trail about 1.5 miles (2.5 km) long starting at the state park campground. Site open. Owner: Michigan Department of Natural Resources. Site manager: Cheboygan State Park. ARLHS USA-161.
Poe Reef
1929. Active; focal plane 71 ft (21.5 m); white light, 1 s on, 1 s off. 60 ft (18 m) square cylindrical reinforced concrete tower with lantern and gallery, incorporating 3-story keeper's house and a fourth-floor watch room; solar-powered 375 mm lens. The tower is painted black with a broad white band encompassing two floors. Fog horn (blast every 30 s) when needed. C.M. Hanchey's photo is at right, a 2007 photo is available, Anderson's page has good aerial photos, and the Coast Guard has a historic photo. The lighthouse is a sibling of the Martin Reef Light (see Eastern Upper Michigan). In 2013 the lighthouse became available for transfer under NHLPA. Located in the middle of the eastern entrance to South Channel about 6 miles (10 km) northeast of Cheboygan. Accessible only by boat. Visible from Cheboygan State Park and from lighthouse cruises. Site and tower closed. Owner/site manager: U.S. Coast Guard. ARLHS USA-610; USCG 7-11750.
Spectacle Reef
1874 (O.M. Poe). Active; focal plane 86 ft (26 m); red flash every 5 s. 93 ft (28.5 m) round limestone tower with lantern and gallery, incorporating keeper's house, mounted on a square limestone crib and attached to 1-story limestone fog signal building; solar-powered lens. Tower unpainted; lantern roof painted red. The original 2nd order Fresnel lens, removed in 1982, is on display at the Inland Seas Maritime Museum in Toledo, Ohio. A Coast Guard aerial photo is at the top of this page, Anderson has a good page with current photos, a 2011 photo is available, Forand has a historic postcard view, and the Coast Guard has historic photos. Construction of this lighthouse took 4 years and was regarded as a major engineering achievement. Located in the South Channel some 15 miles (25 km) east of Bois Blanc Island, northeast of Cheboygan. Accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed. Owner/site manager: U.S. Coast Guard. ARLHS USA-782; USCG 7-11730.
Poe Reef Light
Poe Reef Light, Lake Huron, June 2012
Flickr Creative Commons photo by C.M. Hanchey

Presque Isle County (Upper Lake Huron) Lighthouses
** Forty Mile Point
1897 (Milton B. Adams). Active; focal plane 66 ft (20 m); white light, 3 s on, 3 s off. 52 ft (16 m) square cylindrical brick tower with lantern and gallery attached to 2-1/2 story brick duplex keeper's house. Tower painted white, lantern roof black. A 4th order Henri LePaute Fresnel lens (1872) has been in use here since 1935. Original brick fog signal building, oil house, and other light station buildings. April Janowski's photo is at right, Anderson has a good page for the lighthouse, Pepper has an excellent web page, the Coast Guard has a historic photo, Forand has a postcard view, and Bing has a satellite view. Sibling of Big Bay Point Light on Lake Superior (see Western Upper Peninsula). The surrounding property was conveyed to Presque Isle County as a park in 1971, and the county assumed responsibility for maintaining the buildings. In 1998, ownership of the buildings was also transferred to the county, which then organized a preservation society to work for restoration of the lighthouse. The society has a resident caretaker who lives in an apartment in the keeper's house; the rest of the house is a museum. Volunteer keepers serve as docents during the summer and receive free camping privileges in the surrounding county park. Located in a county park off US 23 about 5 miles (8 km) northwest of Rogers City. Site open, museum open daily late May to early September, tower closed except for occasional open houses. Owner: Presque Isle County (Lighthouse Park). Site manager: 40 Mile Point Lighthouse Society. ARLHS USA-303; USCG 7-11715.
Calcite Breakwater
1928. Active; focal plane 49 ft (15 m); red light, 2 s on, 2 s off. 45 ft (14 m) square skeletal tower rising from a square 1-story base. GLLKA's blog has a photo (last photo on the page), and Google has a satellite view. Since 1912 the Port of Calcite has served the world's largest open-pit limestone quarry. Located at the end of the breakwater, about 1.5 mi (2.5 km) southeast of Rogers City. Site and tower closed. USCG 7-11610.
Calcite Incoming Range Rear
Date unknown. Active (privately maintained); focal plane 110 ft (33.5 m); continuous red light. Approx. 120 ft (37 m) square brick tower, part of a large building; the light is on the side of the tower. A photo is available, and Google has a satellite view. Located in the mining complex. Site and tower closed, but there is an observation tower just outside the complex from which the tower can be viewed. Owner/site manager: Michigan Limestone and Chemical Company. USCG 7-11635.
Forty Mile Point Light
Forty Mile Point Light, Rogers City, August 2011
Flickr Creative Commons photo by C.M. Hanchey
**** Presque Isle (2 ) (New Presque Isle)
1871 (O.M. Poe). Active; focal plane 113 ft (34.5 m); white flash every 15 s. 109 ft (33 m) round brick tower with lantern and gallery attached to 1-1/2 story brick keeper's house. Tower painted white, gallery black, lantern roof red. 2-story wood assistant keeper's house (1905). The original 3rd order Fresnel lens was removed in 2003 for restoration; a temporary light is in use. Larry Myhre's photo is at the top of this page, Brandon Cirillo has a great photo, Anderson has a good page for the lighthouse, Marinas.com has aerial photos, Forand has a historic postcard view, Huelse also has a historic postcard view, the Coast Guard has a historic photo, and Bing has a satellite view. This is the tallest Lake Huron lighthouse. The keeper's house is a lighthouse museum and gift shop. This elegant lighthouse was the first of a series of six Great Lakes lighthouses now known as the Poe Towers (the others are at Au Sable in the Eastern Upper Peninsula, Big Sable and Little Sable in the Western Lower Peninsula, Outer Island in Northern Wisconsin and Grosse Point in Illinois). The New Presque Isle Lighthouse Historical Society works for maintenance and restoration of the light station. As part of a thorough restoration during the 1990s the tower was enclosed with a new course of brick; this makes the lighthouse noticeably "fatter" than it appears in older photos. Restoration of the assistant keeper's house was completed in 2002, and the house now serves as the Presque Isle Keeper's House Museum. In late 2003 a $91,500 state grant provided funds to complete restoration of the lens and lantern room. Located at the end of Grand Lake Road at the north point of the peninsula, about 1.5 miles (2.5 km) northwest of the older lighthouse. Site open; museum open daily except Mondays Memorial Day (late May) through Labor Day (early September); tower open daily Memorial Day through Labor Day and on weekends mid-May through mid-October. Owner: Presque Isle Township. Site manager: Presque Isle Township Museum Society. ARLHS USA-667; USCG 7-11550.
*** Presque Isle (1) (Old Presque Isle)
1840 (extensively rebuilt). Inactive since 1871. 38 ft (11.5 m) round tower with lantern and gallery, lower 2/3 stone and upper portion brick. Tower painted white, lantern black. The 2-story brick keeper's house was demolished and reconstructed in 1939 as a private residence and is now operated as a museum. The replica lantern (1957) contains a 4th order Fresnel lens relocated from the older South Fox Island Light on Lake Michigan. Bash's photo is at right, Anderson has a good page, Marinas.com has aerial photos, Ed Roth's 2006 photo shows the lighthouse freshly repainted, and Bing has a satellite view. The ruined light tower was privately reconstructed in the 1920s; Forand has a historic postcard view. The property was sold to the state in 1995, but the buildings were donated to the township. Recently restored through volunteer efforts and now operated by the Presque Isle Historical Society. Located on the southeastern point of the Presque Isle peninsula at the entrance to Presque Isle Harbor. Site open, tower open daily Memorial Day (late May) through Labor Day (early September) and on weekends mid-May to mid-October. Owner: Presque Isle Township. Site manager: Presque Isle Township Museum Society. ARLHS USA-668.
* Presque Isle Range Front
1870. Inactive. Approx. 17 ft (5 m) octagonal cylindrical wood tower on a square base, painted white with a red roof. Anderson has a good page for the range lights, Ron Texter has a closeup photo, a 2008 photo is available, and the little tower is centered in Bing's satellite view. Sibling of the Copper Harbor Range Front Light (see Western Upper Peninsula). After deactivation this little lighthouse was relocated to the Old Presque Isle Light (previous entry). Bash has a photo of the light at that location. In 2004, the light was relocated a second time to the new Range Light Park, near its original location in Presque Isle, where it was restored by the Robert Burseky family for the township. Site open, tower closed. Owner/site manager: Presque Isle Township. ARLHS USA-669.

1840 Presque Isle Light, Presque Isle, October 2006
Flickr Creative Commons photo copyright C.W. Bash
* Presque Isle Range Rear
1870. Inactive. Approx. 33 ft (10 m) square cupola-style lantern mounted on the roof of 1-1/2 story wood keepers quarters. Building painted white with red roofs. Anderson has a good page for the range lights, and Bing has a satellite view. Sibling of Copper Harbor Range Rear Light (see below). The lighthouse is a private residence. The range lights have been replaced by square cylindrical skeletal towers with large red and white daymarks (focal plane 36 ft (11 m) for the rear range and and 23 ft (7 m) for the front range; continuous green lights). Located on Grand Lake Road in Presque Isle. Site and tower closed. Owner/site manager: private. ARLHS USA-670; modern lights are USCG 7-11565 (front) and 11570 (rear).

Alpena County (Thunder Bay) Lighthouses
Middle Island
1905. Active; focal plane 78 ft (24 m); white flash every 10 s. 71 ft (21.5 m) round brick tower attached to a service room. The original 4th order Fresnel lens was dismantled and stolen in the 1970s; one large panel has been recovered. Tower painted white with a single broad orange-red horizontal band. The 2-1/2 story duplex brick keeper's house is under restoration. Brick fog signal building, oil house, and other light station buildings. Larry Myhre's photo is at right, Anderson has a fine page, the Coast Guard has a historic photo, Forand has a historic postcard view, and Bing has a satellite view. A preservation group based in Alpena, the Middle Island Lightkeepers Association, has restored the light station as a bed and breakfast inn, which opened in June 2001. The association also has a small visitor center and gift shop on US 23 north of Alpena. In October 2011, it was announced that ownership of the station would be transferred to the association, and the transfer took place on 28 May 2012. Located on an island about 1 mile (1.6 km) offshore and 9 miles (15 km) north of Thunder Bay Island. Accessible only by boat; tours available on weekends June through mid-October. Site open, tower closed. Tower owner: U.S. Coast Guard; site manager: Friends of Middle Island Lighthouse. Remainder of station owner/site manager: Middle Island Lightkeepers Association. ARLHS USA-495; USCG 7-11515.
Thunder Bay Island
1832 (heightened by 10 ft (3 m) in 1857; station established 1832). Active; focal plane 63 ft (21 m); flash every 20 s, alternating green and white. 50 ft (15 m) round brick tower attached to a 2-story brick keeper's house; solar-powered 190 mm lens. Tower painted white, lantern and gallery red. Brick fog signal building (1892), oil house, and other light station buildings. Anderson has a good page for the station, Forand has a historic postcard view, the Coast Guard has a historic photo, and Bing has a satellite view. The original lighthouse was rebuilt after collapsing within within weeks of its construction in 1831. The NOAA Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory has a station on the island. In 1997, a preservation society was formed to lease the light station from the Coast Guard, and restoration efforts began. In 2003 preservationists scrambled to raise matching funds needed to secure a grant for critically needed exterior repairs. Lighthouse Digest has a July 2004 feature article on these restoration efforts. The repairs were completed by Cusack Masonry Restoration in August 2004. A state grant provided funds for a new roof on the keeper's house, completed in 2006. Work to renovate the interior of the keeper's house as a museum is continuing. The preservation society and Alpena Township are working to secure ownership of the land surrounding the light station. Located at the southeast end of the island, off the entrance to Thunder Bay. Accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed. Owner: U.S. Coast Guard. Site manager: Thunder Bay Island Lighthouse Preservation Society. ARLHS USA-847; USCG 7-11495.
Middle Island Light
Middle Island Light, Alpena, October 2004
Flickr Creative Commons photo copyright Larry Myhre
Alpena Harbor (3)
1914 (station established 1875). Active; focal plane 44 ft; red flash every 5 s. 40 ft (?) square pyramidal skeletal tower, partially enclosed below the lantern; 250 mm lens. Entire lighthouse painted red. Fog horn (blast every 15 s) when needed. The original 4th order Fresnel lens is on display at Grand Traverse Light (see Western Lower Peninsula). Bash has a good photo, Anderson's page has several fine photos, and Bing has a satellite view. Known locally as "Sputnik" and as "L'il Red," this tower is the only surviving example of its design. It replaced a wooden lighthouse built in 1888 after an earlier lighthouse was destroyed by fire. Forand has a postcard view of the 1888 lighthouse. In August 2013, ownership of the lighthouse was awarded to the Michigan Lighthouse Conservancy. Mounted at the end of the north breakwater at the mouth of the Thunder Bay River in Alpena. There's a good view from the end of First Avenue, two blocks east of US 23. Site and tower closed. Owner/site manager: U.S. Coast Guard. ARLHS USA-007; USCG 7-11370.

Alcona County Lighthouse
**** Sturgeon Point
1869. Active; focal plane 69 ft (21 m); white flash every 6 s. 71 ft (21.5 m) round brick tower attached to a 1-1/2 story limestone and brick keeper's house. Rare 3-1/2 order Fresnel lens (1887) still in use. Lighthouse and lantern painted white, gallery and lantern roof red; keeper's house also painted white with red trim. C.M. Hanchey's photo is at right, Britten also has a great photo, Anderson has a good page for the station, Marinas.com has aerial photos, Forand has a historic postcard view, the Coast Guard has a historic photo, and Bing has a satellite view. The light station was leased to Alcona County in 1982; volunteers of the Alcona Historical Society have restored the keeper's house as a maritime museum. In 2006, the Coast Guard proposed to deactivate the lighthouse and apparently did so for a short time, but after some negotiation it agreed to maintain the light. The Michigan Department of Natural Resources owns the land around the lighthouse as the Sturgeon Point State Park. Located at the end of Point Road about 4 miles (6.5 km) north of Harrisville. Site open, museum and tower open daily mid June through Labor Day (early September) and on weekends from Memorial Day (late May) through mid June and in September. Owner: U.S. Coast Guard. Site manager: Alcona Historical Society. ARLHS USA-823; USCG 7-11345.
Sturgeon Point Light
Sturgeon Point Light, Harrisville, August 2011
Flickr Creative Commons photo copyright C.M. Hanchey

Iosco County Lighthouse
**** Tawas (Tawas Point, Ottawa Point) (2)
1876 (station established 1853). Active; focal plane 70 ft (21 m); white light occulting every 4 s. 67 ft (20 m) round brick tower attached to 1-1/2 story brick keeper's house; original 4th order Fresnel lens. Lighthouse painted white, lantern and gallery gray, lantern roof red. Fog horn (2 blasts every 60 s) when needed. The lighthouse is floodlit at night. Steve VunCannon's photo is at right, Anderson's page has good photos, the state has a web site for the lighthouse, Marinas.com has aerial photos, Forand has a historic postcard view, the Coast Guard has a historic photo, and Bing has a satellite view. Formerly used as Coast Guard housing, the light station was transferred to the state in 1999. In 2000, the state renovated the grounds, clearing trees and providing handicap access to the area. A $20,000 state grant in 2001 supported a study of restoration needed to return the station to its appearance between 1890 and 1920. Restoration work began in 2002 with demolition of a more recent (1922) assistant keeper's house, replacement of the principal keeper's house roof, and various site improvements. A garage was renovated to serve as a temporary visitor center. The tower was repainted and repaired in 2003. Restoration of the principal keeper's house began in 2006. Since 2008, volunteer keepers pay to stay up to two weeks in the house. Located on a sandy spit enclosing Tawas Bay, off US 23 at the end of Tawas Beach Road, in East Tawas. Site open, museum open daily May through mid October, tower open daily except Tuesdays May through mid October. Owner: Michigan Department of Natural Resources. Site manager: Tawas Point State Park. ARLHS USA-837; USCG 7-11240.
Tawas Point Light
Tawas Point Light, East Tawas, September 2006
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Steve VunCannon

Arenac County (Saginaw Bay) Lighthouses
* Charity Island
1858. Inactive since 1939. 39 ft (12 m) round brick tower with lantern and gallery, originally painted white, lantern black. Gravely endangered by decay and neglect, this station was added to the Lighthouse Digest Doomsday List. The ruined keeper's house was demolished in the spring of 2003. Anderson's page has good photos, Jason Koepke has a view from the lake, and Bing has a satellite view of the station. Sold into private hands in 1963, the island had been owned by a series of developers, but all development plans fizzled. Most of the island is now included in the Michigan Islands National Wildlife Refuge, except for the lighthouse and 5.5 acres (2.4 ha) including the site of the former keeper's house. In 2003, real estate broker Robert Wiltse, the owner of the latter property, built a modern house on the foundations of the keeper's house. Meanwhile, in September 2002, the Arenac County Historical Society formed the Charity Island Preservation Committee to work for restoration of the light tower, and in July 2003 the Society reached an agreement with the Nature Conservancy and the Fish and Wildlife Service on carrying out the restoration. Funding has been difficult to obtain, but in January 2005 the Committee announced funds were in hand to proceed with the historical study needed before actual restoration can begin. Located at the northwest point of the island, in the middle of the entrance to Saginaw Bay. Accessible by passenger ferry mid June through mid September from Northport Marina in Au Gres; in addition Wiltse offers dinner cruises to the light station from Au Gres. Site open, tower closed. Tower owner: Michigan Nature Conservancy; site manager: private. ARLHS USA-943.
Gravelly Shoal
1939 (F.P. Dillon and W. G. Will). Active; focal plane 75 ft (23 m); red flash every 6 s. 65 ft (20 m) square cylindrical white concrete Art Deco tower surmounted by a black steel skeletal radiobeacon tower, mounted on a circular concrete crib; 375 mm lens. Fog horn (blast every 30 s) operates continuously. Anderson has a good page for the lighthouse, Tim Wood has a 2009 photo, and the Coast Guard has a historic photo. Sibling of the Conneault Harbor and Huron Harbor Lights in Ohio. Designed to be controlled remotely from Tawas Point, this lighthouse replaced the Charity Island Light. To resist ice pressure, the crib was strengthened with additional concrete in 1954. Located west of Charity Island, roughly halfway between the island and Point Lookout on the mainland. Accessible only by boat; there should be good views from the passenger ferry from Au Gres to Charity Island. Site and tower closed. Owner/site manager: U.S. Coast Guard. ARLHS USA-340; USCG 7-10540.

Bay County (Bay City Area) Lighthouses
Saginaw Bay (Light 1)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 50 ft (15 m); green flash every 6 s. 50 ft (15 m) round cylindrical tower, painted white with a green horizontal band, presumably mounted on concrete crib. Bing has a distant satellite view. Located in the center of Saginaw Bay about 7.5 mi (12 km) northeast of the Saginaw River entrance and 1 km (0.6 mi) northwest of Channel Island. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS USA-1415; USCG 7-10570.
Saginaw Approach Range Front
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 66 ft (20 m); continuous red light, day and night. 20 m (66 ft) square skeletal tower mounted on a round pier. No photo available, but Google has a good aerial view. The range guides vessels on their final approach to the Saginaw River. Located just off the mouth of the river, on the west side of the channel. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. USCG 7-10550.
Saginaw Approach Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 155 ft (47 m); continuous red light, day and night. Approx. 135 ft (41 m) triangular skeletal tower mounted on a round pier. No ground-level photo available, but Google has an excellent aerial view. Located between a railroad and a sewage treatment plant near Patterson Road and Wilder Road, 1.65 mi (2.65 km) west southwest of the front light. Site and tower closed. USCG 7-10560.
[Saginaw River Range Front (1)]
1876 (station established 1841). Inactive since ca. 1960. The original lighthouse on this station (1841) was the Saginaw Bay Light, a 65 ft (20 m) oldstyle rubblestone tower. The first range light (1876), a 37 ft (11 m) square pyramidal wood tower with enclosed upper portion, was replaced in 1915 by a steel skeletal tower, now also demolished. Forand has a postcard view of the 1876 lighthouse. The concrete crib on which these range towers were built survives at the Bay City Yacht Club, just inside the mouth of the river (Google has a satellite view), and a 1-1/2 story wood assistant keeper's house (1905) survives as a private residence. Site closed. Owner/site manager: private. ARLHS USA-940.
Saginaw River Range Rear
1876 (Godfrey Weitzel). Inactive since 1960 (continued to serve as a Coast Guard station until 1980). 55 ft (17 m) square brick tower attached to 2-story brick keeper's house. Buildings painted white; roofs are red. Bash's photo is at right, Anderson has a fine page for the lighthouse, Schultheiss has a page with additional photos, the Coast Guard has a historic photo, Forand has a historic postcard view, and Google has a fine aerial view. Located on property owned by Dow Chemical Company, the light station was in poor condition by the 1990s. In 2000, the company and the Saginaw River Marine Historical Society announced plans to restore the lighthouse, with Dow Chemical providing most of the funds. In 2000, the roof and windows were replaced. In 2002, the society acquired a historic locomotive-style range lens of the type used in the lighthouse between 1930 and 1960. Located on the west side of the Saginaw River about 2/3 mile (1.1 km) south of Saginaw Bay, north of Bay City. Site and tower closed. Owner: Dow Chemical. Site manager: Saginaw River Marine Historical Society. ARLHS USA-717.
Saginaw Bay Range Rear Light
Saginaw River Range Rear Light, Bay City, July 2004
Flickr Creative Commons photo by C.W. Bash

Huron County (Thumb) Lighthouses

Note: The Thumb of Michigan is the broad, rounded peninsula between Saginaw Bay and the main body of Lake Huron. The coast of the Thumb is in Huron and Sanilac Counties.
** Caseville Harbor
2001. Active (privately maintained); focal plane about 65 ft (20 m); white flash every 10 s. 38 ft (11.5 m) square cylindrical wood tower mounted at one end of a 3-story wood condo building. Buildings painted white with red roofs. A photo is available, Google has a street view, and Bing has a satellite view. Located on the south side of the Pigeon River and on the east side of Main Street (MI-25) in Caseville. Site open, tower open to tours by appointment. Owner/site manager: Caseville Harbor Light. ARLHS USA-1258; USCG 7-10373.
Port Austin Reef (2)
1899 (station established 1878). Active; focal plane 76 ft (23 m); white flash every 6 s. 60 ft (18 m) square cylindrical brick tower attached to 1-story brick keeper's house, mounted on octagonal pier; solar-powered 300 mm lens (1985). The buildings are unpainted brick; the lantern and gallery are painted black; the roofs are red. An additional 2-story brick keeper's house (1878) onshore is now a private residence. Anderson has a page with several photos, Marty Hogan has a photo, Bash has a distant view, the Coast Guard has a historic photo, Forand has a historic postcard view, and Bing has a distant satellite view. The lighthouse has been restored through intensive local efforts beginning in 1988. In 1990, the preservation group obtained a 30-year lease from the Coast Guard. A $14,000 state grant was used in 2001 to rebuild the station's dock for future public access. Exterior restoration is mostly complete, and there are plans to restore the interior. In July 2012, the Secretary of the Interior announced that ownership of the lighthouse will be transferred to the preservation group. In 2014, the state awarded $40,000 toward repairs and upgrades to the station's dock to improve public access. Located about 2 miles (3 km) offshore at the tip of Michigan's "thumb," near Port Austin. Accessible only by boat (navigation is dangerous near the reef). Site and tower closed. Owner: U.S. Coast Guard. Site manager: Port Austin Reef Light Association. ARLHS USA-648; USCG 7-10275.
*** Pointe aux Barques (2)
1858 (station established 1848). Active; focal plane 93 ft (28 m); 2 white flashes every 20 s, the flashes separated by 5 s. 89 ft (27 m) round brick tower attached to a 1-1/2 story brick keeper's house (1908). Twin DCB-224 aerobeacons. Lighthouse painted white; lantern roof is red. Brick assistant keeper's house (1933) and iron oil house. A photo is at right, Anderson's page has excellent photos, Pepper has an excellent page for the station, Marinas.com has aerial photos, the Coast Guard has a historic photo, Forand has a historic postcard view, and Bing has a satellite view. The keeper's house is a museum, or actually two museums, one covering the light station and former lifesaving station and the other for the neighboring Thumb Underwater Preserve. The original 3rd order Fresnel lens and fog bell, formerly displayed and then stored at the Huron City Museum in Huron City, was removed by the Coast Guard in June 2013, restored, and placed on display at the light station in September. Most of the light station was conveyed to Huron County in 1935 and 1958; the lighthouse itself was transferred to county ownership in June 2003. The Pointe aux Barques Lighthouse Society was formed in 2001 to support restoration of the light station. In late 2003 a state grant of $70,000 provided funds for exterior repairs and restoration. Also in 2003, archaeologists located the foundations of the 1848 lighthouse. In October 2005, the Comcast company organized a volunteer day during which the keeper's house was painted inside and out. In 2014 the state granted $26,633 for improvements at the station. Located in Lighthouse County Park, off MI 25 about 6 miles (10 km) northwest of Port Hope (and 7 miles (11 km) southeast of the actual point); the park includes a large campground and 6 vacation cabins. Site open, museum open daily late May through late September, tower closed. Owner: Huron County. Site manager: Lighthouse County Park. ARLHS USA-615; USCG 7-10210.
Point aux Barques Light
Pointe aux Barques Light, Port Hope, September 2007
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Kara
** Harbor Beach (Sand Beach) (2)
1885 (station established 1875). Active (?); focal plane 54 ft (16.5 m); red flash every 6 s. 45 ft (14 m) round cast iron sparkplug tower with lantern and gallery incorporating 2-story keeper's house; 300 mm lens. The original 4th order Fresnel lens is on display at the Grice House Museum near the marina at the north end of town. Lighthouse painted white; the lantern roof is red. Fog horn (blast every 30 s) when needed. Anderson has a fine page for the lighthouse, Larry Myhre has a good photo, the Coast Guard has a historic photo, Forand has a historic postcard view, and Bing has a satellite view. Forand also has a rare postcard view of the original (1875) lighthouse. The Harbor Beach Lighthouse Preservation Society has worked since 1984 for the preservation and restoration of the light. The Society replaced the windows with copies of the originals, painted, and built a dock and steps for access. The Coast Guard restored the crib foundation in 1999. In 2004 the lighthouse became available for transfer under the National Historic Lighthouse Preservation Act. The city and the preservation society submitted an application for ownership, but controversy arose over Coast Guard plans to convert the light to solar power; the preservation society wants the cable connection to the mainland repaired instead. This and other difficulties delayed the transfer of the lighthouse to city ownership until June 2010. The 2014 USCG list describes the light as being "on navigation pole," although withe same focal plane as the lighthouse; we need information on this change. Located on a crib off the end of a detached breakwater protecting the artificial harbor at Harbor Beach. Accessible only by boat; there are good views from public beach parking areas at the foot of Trescott Street, off MI 25. Site open, and guided tours are available on Saturdays late June through the end of August (reservations required). Owner/site manager: City of Harbor Beach. ARLHS USA-365; USCG 7-10130.

Sanilac County Lighthouse
* Port Sanilac
1886. Active; focal plane 69 ft (21 m); 3 white flashes every 10 s. 59 ft (18 m) octagonal hourglass-style brick tower with lantern and gallery attached to 2-story brick keeper's house. The original 4th order Fresnel lens is still in use. Lighthouse painted white; lantern roof is red. Brick oil house. Anderson's page has several photos, a fine 2007 photo is available, Larry Myhre has a fine 2004 photo, Marinas.com has aerial photos, the Coast Guard has a historic photo, Forand has a historic postcard view, and Bing has a satellite view. A handsome lighthouse; there is only one other of this design (Ile au Galets, Lake Michigan). The keeper's house has been a private summer residence, owned by the Rosenfield family since 1928. In 2000 the Coast Guard also transferred ownership of the tower to the residents. In July 2012, the family put the property for sale for $1,599,000; as of December 2013 the price had been lowered to $999,800. Located at Lake and Cherry Streets, off MI 25 in Port Sanilac; the lighthouse can be seen easily from the breakwater at the end of Cherry Street. Public parking provided. Site and tower closed. Owner/site manager: private. ARLHS USA-651; USCG 7-10115.

St. Clair County (St. Clair River) Lighthouses
Note: Lake Huron drains through the St. Clair River. The river is about 40 mi (65 km) long and loses about 5 ft (2 m) of elevation before reaching Lake St. Clair. The river has formed an extensive delta at its mouth.
*** Fort Gratiot (Port Huron) (2)
1829 (Lucius Lyon) (station established 1825). Active; focal plane 86 ft (26 m); green flash every 6 s, day and night. 82 ft (25 m) round old-style brick tower with lantern and gallery; DCB-24 aerobeacon (1933). Lighthouse painted white; lantern roof is red. 2-story duplex brick keeper's house (1874) used as Coast Guard housing. Brick fog signal building (1901). A photo appears at the top of the page, Pepper has the station's history on his excellent web page, Anderson's page has photos, Marinas.com has aerial photos, Huelse has a historic postcard view, Forand has a second postcard view. the Coast Guard has a historic photo, Google has a street view, and Bing has a aerial view. The original lighthouse was so poorly constructed it collapsed in November 1828. The present lighthouse was extended from 65 ft (20 m) in 1861. The oldest light station in Michigan and the first on Lake Huron, Fort Gratiot was saved from deactivation by public protests in 1996. In 2004, Port Huron City Council sought ownership of the light under NHLPA, and in October 2005 this request was approved by the National Park Service. The transfer of ownership was suspended pending cleanup of hazardous materials by the Coast Guard. In 2005, Congress appropriated $400,000, and in summer 2006 the museum hired architects to plan the restoration. In 2008, the lighthouse was closed to tours due to crumbling brickwork. Architects reported that it needs almost $4 million for a complete restoration. These plans were endangered in 2009, when city council rejected a deed offered by the federal government because it found the financial requirements too heavy. However, in April 2010 the commissioners of St. Clair County agreed to accept ownership. In May 2010, the Port Huron Museum received a $40,000 grant from the Michigan Lighthouse Assistance Program for repairs to the lighthouse; a $370,000 federal grant is available and the city of Port Huron has also put up $370,000. The transfer of ownership was made on 2 September 2010. In July 2011, city council voted unanimously to award a $333,000 contract for restoration. The restored lighthouse reopened for climbing on 19 May 2012. Located at the foot of Garfield Street in Port Huron, near the entrance to the St. Clair River. Site open, tower open to tours Friday through Monday, late May through late August (reservations advised). Group tours of the lighthouse are available year round, and groups of 20-40 can book the light station for overnight stays. Owner: St. Clair County. Site manager: Port Huron Museum. ARLHS USA-291; USCG 7-10015.
Fort Gratiot Light
Fort Gratiot Light, Port Huron, June 2010
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Gary Dicer
* [Fort Gratiot Range Front (2)]
Date unknown (2003?). Active; focal plane 11 m (36 ft); continuous white light shown by a 12 ft (3.7 m) long vertical bar light. 9 m (30 ft) hexagonal cylindrical brick tower. The tower also carries as a daymark two red vertical stripes on either side of the white bar; in addition a continuous green passing light is mounted at the top of the tower. Bash has a photo, a 2011 photo is available, Google has a street view, and Bing has an aerial view. Developers of the riverfront Edison Shores Condominiums reached an agreement in early 2003 with the city and Coast Guard to replace the previous light (a standard "D9" tower) with a tower matching the style of the rear light. Located on the riverfront in Thomas Edison Park, 458 ft (140 m) north northeast of the rear light. Site open, parking provided, tower closed. CCG 766.4; USCG 7-9990 (range light) and 9995 (passing light).
* Fort Gratiot Range Rear (2)
Date unknown (late 1990s?). Active; focal plane 52 ft (16 m); continuous white light shown at the top of the tower and also by a 12 ft (3.7 m) long vertical bar light; there is also a continuous green passing light intensified for ships approaching from the south. The tower also carries as a daymark two red vertical stripes on either side of the white bar. 58 ft (19 m) hexagonal brick tower. Bash has a photo, Google has a street view, and Bing has an aerial view. The range guides ships entering the St. Clair River under the Blue Water Bridge. This lighthouse was built by developers of the riverfront Edison Shores Condominiums in an architectural style matching that of the condos. Located on the west side of Thomas Edison Parkway at Edison Shores, less than 1/4 mile (about 300 m) north of the lightship Huron. Site open, tower closed. CCG 766.5; USCG 7-10000.
**** Lightship 103 Huron
1921. Decommissioned 1970 (a decorative light is displayed). 340 ton single-masted steel lightship, length 97 ft (30 m), beam 24 ft (7 m). The hull of the Huron is painted black and the superstructure white, instead of the usual lightship red. Pepper's page has the ship's history and photos from his visit, a 2009 photo is available, Anderson also has a good page for the lightship, Google has a street view, and Bing has an aerial view. After 14 years on Lake Michigan, this ship served off Port Huron for 35 years. One of the best preserved of all the lightships, fully equipped and with operational lamp and fog signal. Dry berthed at Pine Grove Park on Prospect Street in downtown Port Huron. Site open, ship open (admission fee) daily late May through early September, also Friday through Monday in early to late May. Owner/site manager: Port Huron Museum. ARLHS USA-394.
* Peche (Peach) Island Range Rear (5)
1908 (station established 1898). Inactive officially since 1982, but a decorative continuous white light is displayed. 66 ft (20 m) round cast iron tower, painted white with black trim. Original 6th order Fresnel lens in place. Bash's photo is at right, Anderson has an excellent page for the lighthouse, P. Phelan has a winter 2008 photo, Google has a street view, and Bing has an aerial view. This lighthouse was originally located on a crib off Peche Island in the entrance to the Detroit River from Lake St. Clair; the Coast Guard has a historic photo. Prior to relocation, the crib had failed and the lighthouse was leaning at a dizzy angle; Shultheiss has posted a 1980 photo by R. Texter showing this problem. The lighthouse was relocated in 1983 to Marine City. In late 2005, efforts were underway to organize the Friends of Peche Island Lighthouse to support preservation of the light. In 2013 the state denied an application for funds to restore the lighthouse, but the city will proceed with exterior restoration using the intended matching funds. Located in Lighthouse Park on the St. Clair River in Marine City; the park is on Water Street between Jefferson and Washington Streets. Site open, tower closed. Owner/site manager: City of Marine City. ARLHS USA-586.
St. Clair Flats Canal Range Front
1934. Active; focal plane 44 ft (13.5 m); continuous green light. 39 ft (12 m) square cylindrical steel skeletal tower with flared top, enclosed by white steel panels. Original 1-1/2 story wood keepers quarters; also 1-1/2 story wood assistant keeper's house (1938) and a modern ranch-style house. An active Coast Guard station until 1985, this site was sold at auction in 2002. The new owner, Jeff Shook, is working to restore the buildings. Anderson has a good page for the range lights, and Bing has a distant aerial view. Located on the St. Clair River just upstream from Lake St. Clair. Located on South Channel Drive (extension of MI 154) south of Clay's Landing on Harsens Island. Site and tower closed. Owner/site manager: private. ARLHS USA-1331; USCG 7-8535.
Peche Island Range Rear Light
Peche Island Light, Marine City, June 2007
Flickr Creative Commons photo by C.W. Bash
St. Clair Flats Canal Range Rear
1934. Active; focal plane 33 m (108 ft); continuous green light. 30 ft (9 m) square cylindrical steel skeletal tower with flared top; upper 2/5 of tower enclosed by white steel panels. Michel Forand has a historic photo, and Bing has a distant aerial view. Located north of South Channel Drive, 4000 ft (1220 m) northeast of the front light. Site status unknown. Owner/site manager: U.S. Coast Guard. ARLHS USA-1332; USCG 7-8540.
St. Clair Flats Old Channel (St. Clair Flats South Channel Range Front)
1859 (dismantled and rebuilt in 1875). Active; focal plane 28 ft (8.5 m); white flash every 4 s. 23 ft (7 m) round brick tower on a wooden and stone crib. Lantern removed. Anderson has a good page for the range lights, the light is at the right in B. Campion's photo of both range lighthouses, Jeremy D'Entremont wrote an excellent report on the two range lights for the April 2006 Lighthouse Digest, and Google has a satellite view. Endangered by its age, the tower listed noticeably, as seen in a photo. Preservationists took control of the light in 1996 and installed a temporary seawall to protect it from further damage. In 2000 an anonymous donation of $100,000 provided funds for restoration, and in 2003 the state granted $450,000. The two range lighthouses were transferred to the preservation group on 15 November 2004. In 2005, the front light was straightened and restored. In 2013, the state granted $60,000 to rebuild the foundation and complete this restoration. Located southwest of Harsen's Island marking a channel from Lake St. Clair into the St. Clair River (but not the channel now used). Accessible only by boat; visible from the end of South Channel Drive (extension of MI 154) south of Clay's Landing. Site and tower closed. Owner/site manager: Save Our South Channel Lights. ARLHS USA-790; USCG 7-9550.
St. Clair Flats South Channel Range Rear
1859. Inactive since 1907. 40 ft (12 m) round brick tower with lantern and gallery mounted on a timber crib; original 6th order Fresnel lens. The keeper's house, formerly attached, was demolished in the 1930s. Corey Seeman's photo is at right, Anderson has a good page for the range lights, a 2008 photo is available, B. Campion has a photo of both range lighthouses, the Coast Guard has a historic photo showing the former keeper's house (long since demolished), and Google has a satellite view. Jeremy D'Entremont wrote an excellent report on the two range lights for the April 2006 Lighthouse Digest. Endangered by age and years of neglect. A preservation group took control of the light in 1999. The 2003 state grant provided funds for a thorough restoration of the rear light, which was underway in late 2005. By the end of the year the lantern had been removed, restored and replaced; work to construct a seawall was in progress, and repairs to the masonry and interior were planned for early 2006. Ownership of the two range lighthouses was transferred to the preservation group on 15 November 2004. Located southwest of Harsen's Island marking a channel from Lake St. Clair into the St. Clair River (but not the channel now used). Accessible only by boat; visible from the end of South Channel Drive (extension of MI 154) south of Clay's Landing. Site and tower closed. Owner/site manager: Save Our South Channel Lights. ARLHS USA-791.
St. Clair Flats Range Rear Light
St. Clair Flats Range Rear Light, August 2010
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Corey Seeman

Macomb County (Lake St. Clair) Lighthouses
Note: Lake St. Clair is a shallow, roughly circular lake about 25 mi (40 km) in diameter. Shipping crosses the lake by a dredged channel extending northeast to southwest, from the mouth of the St. Clair River to the lake's outflow into the Detroit River.
Macomb County Sheriff Lookout Tower
Date unknown. Active (privately maintained); focal plane 14 m (46 ft); yellow flash every 4 s. Approx. 12 m (39 ft) square cylindrical lookout tower, painted white. No closeup photo available. Bing has a good aerial view, and the tower can be seen in an aerial photo (second photo on the page). This tower is near the location of the historic Clinton River lighthouse, which was destroyed by fire in 1908. We need additional information on this light. Located in Harley Ensign Memorial Park, a boating access area attached to the south breakwater at the mouth of Clinton River in Harrison Township. Site open, tower status unknown. USCG 7-9030.
Miller Memorial
Date unknown. Active (privately maintained); focal plane 260 ft (79 m); flash every 5 s, alternating red and white. Visible from all over Lake St. Clair, this light is displayed from the top of a 20-story apartment building at the end of Shore Club Drive in St. Clair Shores; Google has a street view and a satellite view. Owner/site manager: Shore Club Marina and Apartments. USCG 7-8875.
Lake St. Clair
1941. Active; focal plane 52 ft (16 m); green light, 3 s on, 3 s off. Approx. 40 ft (12 m) round cylindrical tower centered on an octagonal 1-story work building, mounted on a steel and concrete caisson; solar-powered lens. Lighthouse is white with a single broad green band. No active fog signal. The tower also carries an array of weather instruments as NOAA C-MAN station LSCM4. NOAA's photo is at right, Jack Salen has a good 2008 photo, and a 2013 photo is available. Located in the middle of Lake St. Clair, about 10 km (6 mi) east of Grosse Pointe. Accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed. Owner/site manager: U.S. Coast Guard. ARLHS USA-426; CCG 709; USCG 7-8525.
Lake St. Clair Light
Lake St. Clair Light; NOAA photo

Wayne County (Detroit River) Lighthouses
Note: The Detroit River is 28 mi (44 km) long. Discharging the waters of the upper Great Lakes into Lake Erie, the river descends only 3 ft (1 m), making it more of a strait than a river. And indeed, the river's original French name D├ętroit simply means "strait."
Peche Island Range Front (7)
Date unknown (station established 1898). Active; focal plane 35 ft (11 m); continuous white light seen only on the range line; there is also a continuous white passing light. 35 ft (11 m) square cylindrical skeletal tower mounted on a round 1-story concrete base. Lighthouse painted white. The tower also carries a rectangular daymark painted white with a red vertical stripe on the range line. This range guides vessels southbound entering the Detroit River. Located in Lake St. Clair about 0.7 mi (1.1 km) northeast of the rear light. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. Owner/site manager: U.S. Coast Guard. USCG 7-8400.
Peche Island Range Rear (5)
Date unknown (station established 1898). Active; focal plane 115 ft (35 m); continuous white light seen only on the range line. 115 ft (35 m) square cylindrical skeletal tower mounted on a round 1-story concrete base. Lighthouse painted white. The 1908 lighthouse survives; it was relocated to Marine City (see above). Located in Lake St. Clair about 0.7 mi (1.1 km) east of Windmill Point. Accessible only by boat, although there is a good view from the Windmill Point Light. Site open, tower closed. Owner/site manager: U.S. Coast Guard. USCG 7-8410.
* Windmill Point (4?)
1933 (station established 1838). Active; focal plane 42 ft (13 m ); white light, 3 s on, 3 s off. Approx. 40 ft (12 m) round steel plate tower with a small lantern and gallery, mounted on a 1-story octagonal concrete base. Tower painted white, lantern and gallery black. The lighthouse and a small equipment shelter are built on a short steel and concrete pier projecting into the river. Josh Bushinsky's photo is at right, Anderson has a page with good photos, a good 2007 closeup is available, Bash has a fine photo, Marinas.com has aerial photos, and Google has a street view and an aerial view. Not much is known about this unusual Art Deco tower, one of the last traditional lighthouses built on the Great Lakes. The original lighthouse was rebuilt several times: in 1866 and 1875 at least. Forand has a historic postcard view of the 1875 lighthouse. A nearby range light, discontinued in 1931, was relocated to the Lower Nicolet West Range on the St. Mary's River (see Eastern Upper Peninsula). Located in Mariner's Park, at the end of Alter Road in Grosse Pointe; this is at the Detroit River entrance from Lake St. Clair, a little over a mile (2 km) east of Belle Isle. Site open, tower closed. Owner/site manager: U.S. Coast Guard. ARLHS USA-896; USCG 7-8260.
* William Livingstone Memorial
1930 (Gaza Moroti). Active; focal plane 58 ft (17.5 m); white light occulting every 4 s, day and night. 50 ft (15 m) square fluted white marble tower, unpainted, with black lantern but no gallery. Jim Garrett has a good 2007 photo, Marinas.com has aerial photos, Huelse has a historic postcard view, and Google has a aerial view. The only marble lighthouse in the U.S., this tower was built with private funds as a memorial to William Livingstone, president of the Lakes Carriers Association from 1902 until his death in 1925. Located in Belle Isle Park at the eastern tip of Belle Isle in the Detroit River; the location is said to be poorly marked. Site open, tower closed. Owner: City of Detroit. Site manager: Detroit Recreation Department. ARLHS USA-978; USCG 7-8240.

Windmill Point Light, Grosse Pointe, October 2006
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Josh Bushinsky
Detroit Waterworks Intake Crib
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 40 ft (12 m); white flash every 5 s. 13 m (43 ft) round masonry structure with an open cupola centered on the conical metal roof. The building is unpainted brown stone, roof and cupola metallic gray. A 2012 photo is available, Google has a good aerial view. Located in the channel between Belle Isle and the city, opposite the Harbor Hill Marina on Freud Street. Accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed. USCG 7-8350.
* Tricentennial State Park
2003. Active (privately maintained); red flash every 4 s (a continuous white light is also displayed). 58 ft (18 m ) round brick tower with lantern and gallery, painted white; lantern roof is red. The decorative white light is shown from the lantern; the red navigation light is mounted on the side of the tower. Steve Burt has a 2012 photo, and Google has a street view and an aerial view. The park, part of a riverfront redevelopment project, was built to commemorate the 300th anniversary of Detroit in 2001; the lighthouse was built in 2003 when a marina was added to the park. The local building trades council has an article on the construction of the lighthouse. Located at the marina entrance in the park, at Atwater and St. Aubins Streets a short distance east of downtown Detroit. Site open, tower closed. Owner/operator/site manager: Michigan Department of Natural Resources (William G. Millikan State Park and Harbor). USCG 7-8202.
* River Rouge Mariners Memorial
2004. Active (privately maintained); focal plane 43 ft (13 m); continuous white light. 41 ft (12.5 m) hexagonal wood tower with lantern and gallery, mounted on a stone base. Lighthouse painted white with red trim. A 2012 photo and another photo are available, and Google has an aerial view. Built as a civic project in 2003-2004, the lighthouse was dedicated in May 2004. Located in Belanger Park on the Detroit River in River Rouge, about 5 miles (8 km) southeast of downtown Detroit. Site open, tower closed. Owner/operator/site manager: City of River Rouge (Belanger Park). ARLHS USA-1223; USCG 7-8147.
* Grosse Ile North Channel Range Front (2)
1906 (station established 1894). Inactive since 1963. 50 ft (15 m) octagonal wood tower with lantern and gallery, painted white; the lantern roof is green. The 2-1/2 story Victorian keeper's house, nearby on Parke Lane, survives as a private residence. James Phelps's photo is at right, Anderson has a good page for the lighthouse, another photo is available, Marinas.com has aerial photos, Forand has a historic postcard view, and Google has a satellite view. The township purchased the lighthouse from the federal government in 1965 for $350. Located at Lighthouse Point on the northeastern side of the island, on a concrete foundation connected to the island by a wood walkway. Site and tower open to guided tours. Owner: Grosse Ile Township. Site manager: Grosse Ile Historical Society. ARLHS USA-357.
Grosse Ile North Channel Range Front Light
North Channel Range Front Light, Grosse Ile, October 2006
Flickr Creative Commons photo by James Marvin Phelps

Monroe County (Lake Erie) Lighthouse
Detroit River (Bar Point Shoal)
1885. Active; focal plane 55 ft (17 m); two white flashes every 6 s. 49 ft (15 m) round cast iron sparkplug tower with lantern and two galleries, incorporating a 2-story keeper's house and attached to a 1-story wood fog signal building. The original 4th order Fresnel lens, recently removed, is on loan to the Michigan Maritime Museum in South Haven. The upper half of the lighthouse is painted black, lower half white; the roof of the fog signal building is red. Fog horn (one 3 s blast every 30 s). James Phelps's photo is at right, Anderson has a page for the lighthouse, an October 2007 photo is available, Marinas.com has aerial photos, Lighthouse Digest has a 1998 article on the history of the lighthouse, and the Coast Guard has a historic photo. The lighthouse is built on a stone crib with pointed ends to split ice floes. Located south of the entrance to the Detroit River from Lake Erie. Accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed. Owner/site manager: U.S. Coast Guard. ARLHS USA-227; CCG 636; USCG 7-6885.
Inland Lighthouse: Ionia County
* Jordan Lake
1938. Inactive. 37 ft (11 m) hexagonal concrete tower with lantern and gallery, attached to a 2-story residence. Originally painted white, the tower is now covered with a fake stone veneer. Justin Varner has a photo, and Google has a satellite view and a distant street view. The lighthouse was built as a free-standing tower by Ernest G. York as part of a boat-rental and beach-concession business. A red flashing light was displayed for many years. Lighthouse Explorer has a historic postcard view. Located on Lakeview Drive in Lake Odessa, off MI 50. Site and tower closed (private property), but the lighthouse can be seen from nearby. Owner/site manager: private.

Inland Lighthouse: Roscommon County
* Houghton Lake (2)
2003. Active (privately maintained); light characteristic unknown. 35 ft (11 m) hexagonal wood tower with lantern, topped by a weathervane. Lighthouse painted white with narrow red horizontal bands. A view and a second view from the lake are available, and Google has an indistinct satellite view. Michel Forand has a postcard view of the original 87 ft (26.5 m) lighthouse, built in 1962. Located on Shoreline Drive in Houghton Lake Heights, off MI 55. Site open, tower closed. Owner/site manager: Heights Marina.
Detroit River Light
Detroit River Light, Lake Erie, September 2008
Flickr Creative Commons photo by James Marvin Phelps

Information available on lost lighthouses:

Notable faux lighthouses:

Adjoining pages: North: Eastern Upper Peninsula | East: Southwestern Ontario | South: Ohio | West: Western Lower Peninsula

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Checked and revised March 16, 2014. Lighthouses: 51. Lightships: 1. Site copyright 2014 Russ Rowlett and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.