Digest>Archives> May 2008

Wickies Wisdom - WANTED: Lighthouse Keeper and Family Photographs

By Timothy Harrison


Over the years we have published many photographs of lighthouse keepers and family members who lived at and grew up at lighthouses.

In some cases we actually saved some photographs from being thrown out or destroyed and lost forever. Other times we have tracked down descendants, many who had never even heard of us, and asked them for photographs. Other times, people would come forward and simply stop by with photographs or mail images to us.

By publishing these photographs we have preserved the memory of these people for the benefit of everyone today and for all future generations.

However, we know there are literally hundreds of photographs of lighthouse keepers and lighthouse families at lighthouses that have never been published and are yet to be found.

In some cases they may be hidden away in attics, old family records, in family Bibles, or in a shoe box on a closet shelf. In other cases they may be held by a local historical society and after they published in their local newsletter, it was filed away and possibly forgotten. I actually know of some instances where one person for a small group or small historical society held all the old photos and when they died, the images simply disappeared.

Connie Small, author of the book, “The Lighthouse Keeper’s Wife,” who gave hundreds and hundreds of lectures on lighthouses, always said in every presentation that a lighthouse is simply a cold structure with no meaning, unless we save the photographs and memories of the people who lived at them.

That’s why we need your help in locating photographs of lighthouse keepers and family members and any newspaper accounts that might have been written about them or any type of recorded memories. Obviously, we know, in many instances, there may only be photographs, with no stories or memories. Photographs are a valuable part of history that needs to be published to help save the history of our historic lighthouses.

Photographs can be e-mailed to us, provided they are a high resolution of 300 dpi or better on a JPEG file or duplicates can be made and mailed to us.

We promise to eventually publish every lighthouse keeper photo mailed to us from any era, Lighthouse Service or Coast Guard.

Help us save lighthouse history through photographs. Only you can make a difference for future generations.

Tim Harrison

Lighthouse Digest

P.O. Box 250

East Machias, ME 04630

E-Mail - Editor@LighthouseDigest.com

This story appeared in the May 2008 edition of Lighthouse Digest Magazine. The print edition contains more stories than our internet edition, and each story generally contains more photographs - often many more - in the print edition. For subscription information about the print edition, click here.

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