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The Forty Mile Point Lighthouse is described in the book "Road Trips Michigan Back Roads

Another cool Michigan back roads day trip.


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Forty Mile Point Lighthouse

The 40 Mile Point Lighthouse is unique for how it was built, for the rare lens that sends out the light and for the shipwreck that is in the shallows just offshore. These and other features are good reasons putting this lighthouse on your getaway list. The guided tour is entertaining, informative and will provide all the details and secrets that aren’t included in this brief chapter. The main building has been faithfully restored. The white ash woodwork and floors are there. Period items make up the furnishings and provide a realistic sense of what life was like for the lighthouse keepers.


Forty Mile Point Lighthouse

Operating the light was no small matter, kerosene had to be replenished, firewood had to be gathered, cut and split and fuel for the foghorn boilers had to be maintained. The light lens rotated by way of weights powered by a clockwork mechanism. That clockwork mechanism had to be rewound about every 2-4 hours depending on the ambient temperature. The kerosene lamp had to be attended to. In the keeper’s quarters there is a skylight that isn’t open to the sky. That skylight acted as an alarm for the light housekeeper. If the kerosene lamp up above went out, no light would come down through the skylight so the keeper would be alerted and could dash up there to ignite the lantern. The tour reveals these and many other details of life as a lighthouse keeper in northern Michigan.