Michigan Lighthouse Guide and Map: Alcona County Lighthouses
This is our sixth edition of the Michigan Lighthouse Guide and Map series, and it focuses on Alcona County Lighthouses. Putting together a list of lighthouses in Alcona County is simple, because there is only one. The Sturgeon Point Lighthouse is located in Harrisville, and is part of the Sturgeon Point State Park, managed by the Alcona County Historical Society. This is one of many great stops along the U.S. 23 Heritage Route on the state’s “Sunrise Side.” Today we will share some of the history of this lighthouse, pictures from our visits, tour information, and more. Check out our Photo Gallery: Sturgeon Point Lighthouse to see more!
Alcona County is Michigan’s first county alphabetically (out of 83). It has 695 square miles and 36 miles of Lake Huron coastline. More than 10,000 people call Alcona County home, which puts it near the bottom of Michigan counties for population. Much of the county is part of the Huron-Manistee National Forest. Harrisville is the county seat.
The Sturgeon Point Lighthouse was built in 1869, at a time when Alcona had thriving fishing and lumbering industries. It marks a reef that extends out from Sturgeon Point for about a mile into Lake Huron.Constructed in the Cape Cod style, its tower is brick and stands 70 feet tall. The tower is attached to a keepers dwelling. The lighthouse is painted white with red trim.
The Alcona County Historical Society opens the lighthouse during summer months. Visitors can learn all about the lighthouse and the preservation efforts that have restored it to its current state, and even climb the tower!
Across from the parking lot for the lighthouse is the one-room Bailey School. This 1907 building is made of Norway pine and served as a school in Mikado for nearly 40 years. It was moved to this site in the late 1990s and is now part of the museum complex at the site. Various maritime artifacts, including old boats, are located throughout the grounds.
The Sturgeon Point Lighthouse is located at the end of Point Rd. From U.S. 23 north of Harrisville, head northeast on N. Lake Shore Drive and take it to Point Rd. Turn right on Point Rd. and follow the signs to Sturgeon Point State Park.