Day Four - Marblehead Lighthouse

Marblehead Travel Blog

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Still working today

We decided to sleep in a bit this morning, and just lounge the morning away!  R and R is good!

We discovered that tours of the Marblehead Lighhouse were for about 4 hours in the afternoon, so just after lunch we loaded up the van and took off.  I have always wanted to go up in the lighthouse.  This structure has always intrigued me as I can just imagine the lighthouse keeper standing on the red observation deck!  For many years, the lighthouse has stood as a landmark for us when out on the boat or on jet skiis.  Here was my chance to see it - up close!

Admission was $2 per person - what a bargain!  You are assigned times for your tour, and luckily our wait was only about 15-20 minutes.  First, one of the volunteers gave a talk on the history and timeline of lighthouse.

Dizzy?
  Marblehead Lighthouse is the oldest continuous working light on the Great Lakes, and guided sailors since 1822.  It is also one of the area's most photographed sights.  Over the years from the whale oil lamps to the single kerosene lamp to the modern day electric lamp, this light has provided navigation to recreational boaters and commercial sailors.  At one time, the Fresnel lamp provided the magification of a single kerosene lamp.  The keeper would climb the stairs every few hours to refuel the lantern and keep the light shining. 

Today the lighthouse is operated and maintained by the U.S. Coast Guard.  The property surrounding the structure is taken care of by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.  Today a 300 mm lens projects a green light so as not to be confused with other white lights in the area.

Looking straight down
  The light flashes every 6 seconds and can be seen for eleven nautical miles.  The restored keeper's house adjacent to the lighthouse is a museum and gift shop. 

At one time the lighthouse was shorter.  When it was deemed the light needed to be taller, a contractor was hired to extend the structure.  In the accompanying pictures, you will note the conical shape up to a ridge which then goes straight up with the railing and windowed light at the top.  Instead of starting over and building a new lighthouse, the conical shape was built around the old structure and new height added at the top.  You can still see the original structure inside the base of the lighthouse.  There are 77 steps to the observation deck.

Reflecting on the sights
  These circular iron steps have stood the test of time!  About half way up, you can stop for a rest in the window alcove and look out over Lake Erie. 

Once on top, we were free to stay as long as we liked.  The views were wonderful!  Looking down on the rock ledges was quite a sight.  Though it wasn't a clear day, we could still see for quite a distance.  The stairs were a little steep descending the tower, but all of us made it easily.  What a great tour, and one I would highly recommend!

The girls were excited to once again explore the rocks around the base and surrounding area.  They found a cave, and made their parents a little nervous of slippery footing. 

We finished sightseeing in these area with a trip over to Johnson's Island.

Swimming!
  The significant fact about this small island was it once housed  Confederate prisoners of war during the Civil War.  There is a cemetery located on the island of prisoners who died while there.  At one time, over 3000 prisoners stayed on the island.  Today, there is a small fee to access the island, and many luxury homes and vacation homes are built around the old quarry and throughout the island. 

Once back at Parcel's Post, the girls decided to swim in the pool while their Mom and Dad went to dinner to celebrate their wedding anniversary.  It was decided to call this the "crash" vacation.  In the evening, our granddaughter hit a small rock while riding her scooter and fell to the pavement scraping her forehead, cheek, lip, and chin.  She wasn't wearing her helmet, but has learned a valuable lesson on why one should wear it.  First me, then her!

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Still working today
Still working today
Dizzy?
Dizzy?
Looking straight down
Looking straight down
Reflecting on the sights
Reflecting on the sights
Swimming!
Swimming!
On Top of Marblehead Light
On Top of Marblehead Light
Exploring the rocks at the Marbleh…
Exploring the rocks at the Marble…
Taking time to sit
Taking time to sit
Us
Us
They love to climb!
They love to climb!
Looking down
Looking down
Heading to the rocks
Heading to the rocks
Picturesque
Picturesque
Navigation for sailors
Navigation for sailors
The area surrounding the base of t…
The area surrounding the base of …
Frensel Lens
Frensel Lens
Struck by lightning - see the melt…
Struck by lightning - see the mel…
A cross section of the lighthouse
A cross section of the lighthouse
Historical plaque found in the mus…
Historical plaque found in the mu…
Keepers House
Keeper's House
Another view from the top
Another view from the top
Us again
Us again
The light
The light
Looking down on the park area
Looking down on the park area
Looking down on the keepers house
Looking down on the keeper's house
We are way up there!
We are way up there!
Looking out over the area
Looking out over the area
Deep in thought
Deep in thought
I wonder what she is thinking.
I wonder what she is thinking.
The light today
The light today
Halfway there
Halfway there
Heading down the steps
Heading down the steps
Marblehead Lighthouse
Marblehead Lighthouse
Deer on Johnsons Island
Deer on Johnson's Island
Tired bunch of girls
Tired bunch of girls
More swimming
More swimming
Audreys Accident
Audrey's Accident
Marblehead
photo by: FishAtHeart