Photo Gallery Friday: Michigan's Lighthouses on Lake Michigan

Photo Gallery Friday: Michigan’s Lighthouses on Lake Michigan

Point Betsie Lighthouse

Michigan is home to more lighthouses than any other state in the country, and more than a handful of these beacons guide vessels on Lake Michigan. The lake has for centuries been an important place for shipping, fishing, and recreational travel. Lights help guide travelers into harbors at Charlevoix, Grand Haven, Muskegon, Holland and other cities while others warn of the dangers of places like Big Sable Point, White Shoal or the Straits of Mackinac. These lighthouses are not only each remarkable in their architecture, but also provide an important link to the maritime history of this great state.

A few of these lighthouses have Michigan historical markers at them. Here’s an excerpt from the one at Holland State Park: “The first lighthouse built at this location was a small, square wooden structure erected in 1872. In 1880 the lighthouse service installed a new light atop a metal pole in a protective cage. The oil lantern was lowered by pulleys for service. At the turn of the century a steel tower was built for the light, and in 1907 the present structure was erected. Named the Holland Harbor South Pierhead Lighthouse, it has a gabled roof that reflects the Dutch influence in the area. The lighthouse, popularly referred to as “Big Red,” was automated in 1932.”

We still have a few Lake Michigan lighthouses to see: Poverty Island Lighthouse, St. Martin Island Lighthouse, South Fox Island Lighthouse, and Squaw Island Lighthouse. A great way to see some of the offshore beacons is by taking a Shepler’s Lighthouse Cruise out of Mackinaw City.

Enjoy our look at some of our favorite photos from Lake Michigan lighthouses!