| Lake Michigan
The necessity of lighted beacons to guide water-bound
dates all the way back to the building
of the Pharos at Alexandria, the first
of the world completed around 280 B.C.
The history of lighthouses in America is more recent,
dating back to 1716 with the light
on Little Brewster Island in Boston
Michigan's own history of lights begins even before her
own statehood when the Fort Gratiot Light was
put into service in 1825.
Michigan is bordered by 4 of the 5 Great Lakes, giving it
3,288 miles of shoreline --- the most of
any state, except Alaska --- and therefore, more lighthouses.
One lighthouse historian says there were as many as 247 lighthouses in
Michigan, but now less than 100 are in good condition. A State of
Michigan map listed 124 remaining lighthouses and some books contain
more or less.
Some of these lights are no longer operational
and some are only small remnants of the ones that once illuminated the
but each has its own place in history.
The dates listed for the lighthouses are from the USCG, unless
overwhelming data indicates otherwise. Also, the original
illumination of many stations is unknown; therefore, the Fresnel Lens
is listed, as all American Lighthouses were initially refitted between
1852 & 1859.)