Whitefish Point, Lake Superior
Automated by the Coast Guard in 1970, the Light Station no longer has a resident keeper. Appropriately, the dwelling now houses the Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum.The Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society, a group of divers researching the wrecks, opened the museum in 1986. This is the only museum dedicated to shipwrecks on the Great Lakes.
Deceivingly beautiful Lake Superior's unrelenting fury has earned the reputation of being the most treacherous of the Great Lakes. Throughout the museum and theater, visitors will see maritime legends come to life. Artifacts and exhibits tell stories of sailors and ships who braved the waters of Superior and those who were lost to its menacing waves.
In the main museum, each display is devoted to a different shipwreck. See a drawing or photograph of the vessel and artifacts that divers have collected, and read the story of its fatal voyage.
The ships range from sailing schooners of the early 1800's to the Edmund Fitzgerald, the latest and largest shipwreck, which continues to fascinate residents of the U.P. The bell of the Fitzgerald was recovered from the wreck in 1995 and is displayed at the museum in an updated memorial. A Second Order Fresnel lens from White Shoals is also on display.
Experience the gripping tales of ships and men who braved Superior's cold deep waters and violent raging storms. A darkened interior with theatrical lights, soft music, and special sound effects of sea gulls and fog horns sends tingles down the spines of most visitors. Regular showings of colorful underwater films explain the shipwrecks from a diver's view.
The Whitefish Point Light Station established in 1849 is now fully restored and open for tours. Visitors will experience a time in history when lighthouses were maintained by keepers and their families. The lighthouse reflects life at the turn of the century (circa 1890-1920).
The lighthouse and museum are open from May 1st until October 31st daily from 10 A.M. to 6 PM. There is an admission fee with family and group rates available. visitors available. Contact the Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society, phone 906-635-1742 or 800-635-1742 or call the Shipwreck Museum at 906-492-3747 or 888-492-3747.
Edmund Fitzgerald Memorial Service is held on November 10th each fall at 7 pm at the Shipwreck Museum. Open to the public.
Shipwreck Coast Gifts in the museum offers a wide variety of maritime gifts exclusive to Whitefish Point. Mail order is available.
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