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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Macatawa in Ottawa County, Michigan — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
 

Holland Harbor / Holland Harbor Lighthouse

 
 
Side 1 - Holland Harbor / Holland Harbor Lighthouse Marker image. Click for full size.
By Joel S., August 8, 2013
1. Side 1 - Holland Harbor / Holland Harbor Lighthouse Marker
Inscription.
(Side 1) Holland Harbor

When seeking a location for his Netherlands emigrant followers in 1847, the Reverend A.C. Van Raalte was attracted by the potential of using Black Lake (Lake Macatawa) as a harbor. However, the lake's outlet to Lake Michigan was blocked by sandbars and silt. Van Raalte appealed to Congress for help. The channel was surveyed in 1849, but was not successfully opened due to inadequate appropriations. Frustrated, the Dutch settlers dug the channel themselves. On July 1, 1859, the small steamboat Huron put into port. Here, in 1866, the government established the harbor's first lifesaving station. By 1899 the channel had been relocated and harbor work completed. This spurred business and resort expansion. In 1900 over 1,095 schooners, steamers and barges used the harbor.
(Side 2)

Holland Harbor Lighthouse

The first lighthouse built at this location was a small, square wooden structure erected in 1872. In 1880 the lighthouse service installed a new light atop a metal pole in a protective cage. The oil lantern was lowered by pulleys for service. At the turn of the century a steel tower was built for the light, and in 1907 the present structure was erected. Named the Holland Harbor South Pierhead Lighthouse, it has a gabled roof that reflects
Side 2 - Holland Harbor / Holland Harbor Lighthouse Marker image. Click for full size.
By Joel S., August 8, 2013
2. Side 2 - Holland Harbor / Holland Harbor Lighthouse Marker
the Dutch influence in the area. The lighthouse, popularly referred to as "Big Red," was automated in 1932. When the U.S. Coast Guard recommended that it be abandoned in 1970, citizens circulated petitions to rescue it. The Holland Harbor Lighthouse Historical Commission was then organized to preserve and restore the landmark.
 
Erected 1987 by Bureau of History, Michigan Department of State. (Marker Number L394.)
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the Michigan Historical Commission marker series.
 
Location. 42° 46.36′ N, 86° 12.747′ W. Marker is in Macatawa, Michigan, in Ottawa County. Marker can be reached from Bay Road - (Extension of) South Shore Drive when traveling west. Touch for map. Access to the lighthouse is limited and requires a 2/3 mile walk from the gatehouse at the end of Bay Road. Marker is in this post office area: Macatawa MI 49434, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 6 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Holland Harbor Lighthouse / Holland Harbor (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Laketown Township Hall (approx. 4.1 miles away); Graafschap Christian Reformed Church (approx. 4.3 miles away); The First Pioneers of Graafschap
Holland Harbor / Holland Harbor Lighthouse Marker image. Click for full size.
By Joel S., August 8, 2013
3. Holland Harbor / Holland Harbor Lighthouse Marker
(approx. 4.3 miles away); The Cappon House / Isaac Cappon (approx. 5 miles away); Third Reformed Church (approx. 5.2 miles away); Felt Mansion (approx. 5.3 miles away); Dutch in Michigan (approx. 5.4 miles away).
 
More about this marker. This is the same marker that can be seen at the beach at Holland State Park, directly across the channel.
 
Also see . . .  Holland Harbor Lighthouse / Holland Harbor. Identical marker on the north side of the harbor on the beach at Holland State Park. (Submitted on August 12, 2013, by Joel Seewald of Madison Heights, Michigan.) 
 
Categories. Waterways & Vessels
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on August 12, 2013, by Joel Seewald of Madison Heights, Michigan. This page has been viewed 310 times since then and 27 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on August 12, 2013, by Joel Seewald of Madison Heights, Michigan. • Al Wolf was the editor who published this page.
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