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2004 By State
  East Brother 542
  Golden Gate 663G
  Golden Gate 663
  Indian River LSS 300
  Mispillion 302
  Northwest Passage 308
  Old St. Augustine 671
  Little River 305
  Craighill Rear Range 309
  Hooper Strait OE 461
  Race Point 306
  Alpena 316
  Grand Haven OE 450
  Grand Traverse OE 451
  Ludington Pier 304
  Presque Isle 313
New Jersey
  Hereford Inlet Fall 313
  Sea Girt OE 459
New York
  Rondout II 301
North Carolina
  Oak Island OE 445
  Ocracoke OE 456

  Heceta Head OE 455
Rhode Island
  Castle Hill OE 453
  Port Isabel OE 457
  Cape Henry OE 454
  Cape Flattery 303
  Bailey's Harbor Range 674
  Cana Island OE 460
  Raspberry Island 307

  St. David's 311
  Mahota Pagoda 310

Fresnel Lens
  Fourth Order 673
  Hereford ORN
  Point Vicente ORN
  Yorktown ORN
  Boston Harbor ORN

USCG Ships
  Tender George Cobb 116
  Barque Eagle 117

Presque Isle Michigan
Harbour Lights #313

There are few more beautiful or scenic landscapes in the Midwest than the northern part of Michigan's lower peninsula on the banks of Lake Huron. Here, the settlers who came from northern Europe have retained much of their culture and made the region appealing to visitors in search of quiet, unspoiled solitude.

Presque Isle, a thin strip of land along Lake Huron between Alpena and Rogers City, boasts four unique sentinels in close proximity. The first is Old Presque Isle Lighthouse, built in 1840, 'new' Presque Isle Lighthouse, first lighted in 1870 and a pair of range towers complete the Presque Isle sentinels. The approach was deemed so treacherous to mariners, that it is said that many a captain chose not to enter the harbor when a "mean Nor’wester was a-gusting."

Rather than make repairs to the first Presque Isle tower and keepers quarters in the 1860s, the Lighthouse Board decided to remedy the needs at Presque Isle by constructing a taller light at the tip of the peninsula about a mile to the north. At the same time, the two range lights were commissioned to guide vessels into the harbor itself.

The "new" Presque Isle light was authorized by President Abraham Lincoln, and was slated to be more than twice the height of the old 38-foot tower. Built on a slight rise at the new site, the sentinel stands 113 feet above its surroundings today. Outfitted with a magnificent Third Order Fresnel Lens, the beacon can be seen for more than 25 miles. It is still a vital aid to navigation for commercial vessels heading to Lake Michigan and Lake Superior, and the original lens remains in operation today.

The conical brick tower is painted white and the top of the lantern is red. It has an attached, 1½ story Cape Cod keeper’s quarters that has been restored and houses a museum and gift shop. A larger museum is located in the old lighthouse, which was decommissioned in 1871 when the new sentinel was lighted. The Fourth Order Lens once used in the older sentinel is on display.

For lighthouse enthusiasts, Presque Isle is a font of important lighthouse and nautical history. There are few comparable areas where four sentinels can be visited in an afternoon. The lore of the area is as rich as the historic beacons themselves.

There are many stories from years ago of mysterious happenings and sightings. Even today there have been strange occurrences reported. With automation, there are no longer keepers on the premises, so it stands to reason that the ghosts of keeper’s past might maintain a vigil on stormy nights.

Autumn in the region is colorful and appropriately observed, so portraying the New Presque Isle Light with a décor of bright pumpkins and the presence of its "ghostly visitors" makes for a delightful interpretation. This beautiful new addition celebrates more than a popular observance, it pays homage to a heritage that lives on in an unspoiled, romantic shoreline that is well off the beaten path.

For more information about the Presque Isle Lighthouses, contact the Presque Isle Township Parks & Recreation Committee at (517) 595-2653.

HL# Name MSRP Introduced Retired Edition


Presque Isle MI $65 6/04   3,000

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