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MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near DeTour Village in Chippewa County, Michigan — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
 

DeTour Reef Light Station

 
 
DeTour Reef Light Station Marker image. Click for full size.
By Jeri Baron Feltner, September 28, 2013
1. DeTour Reef Light Station Marker
Inscription.

Side One:

Located where the St. Maryís River enters Lake Huron from Lake Superior, DeTour Passage separates the Upper Peninsula from Drummond Island. It has long been a choke point for Great Lakes shipping. Anticipating increased traffic as a result of the locks planned at Sault Ste. Marie, the U.S. Lighthouse Service built an onshore light station on Point DeTour in 1848. As vessels grew in size, DeTour Reef, which extends a mile from Point DeTour in twenty feet of water, became a greater shipping hazard. In 1929, the Lighthouse Service decided to replace the onshore light with a station atop the reef. DeTour Reef Light Station is one of only six reef light stations in Michigan.

Side Two:

Located four miles southeast of here, the DeTour Reef Light Station was constructed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in 1931. The 1861 tower, Fresnel lens and lantern assembly were moved from the Point DeTour Light Station. The new station housed resident keepers, equipment and supplies in three stories. The tower rises more than eighty feet above the water and sits atop a forty-one-foot-high wood crib and concrete pier resting on DeTour Reef. The Coast Guard automated the station in 1974 and excessed it in 1997. The DeTour Reef Light Preservation Society, established in 1998, restored the station in 2004,
DeTour Reef Light Station Marker image. Click for full size.
By Jeri Baron Feltner, September 28, 2013
2. DeTour Reef Light Station Marker
opened it to visitors in 2005, and took ownership in 2010.
 
Erected 2013 by DeTour Reef Light Preservation Society. (Marker Number 2252.)
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the Michigan Historical Commission marker series.
 
Location. 45° 57.89′ N, 83° 59.522′ W. Marker is near DeTour Village, Michigan, in Chippewa County. Marker is on M-134 (a.k.a.: South Scenic Road) just west of East Lakewood Lane, on the left when traveling west. Touch for map. Marker is west of the De Tour Christian Church. Marker is in this post office area: De Tour Village MI 49725, United States of America.
 
Regarding DeTour Reef Light Station. Press Release dated 10-16-2013 as stated below::

""Historical Marker For The DeTour Reef Light Station Dedicated:

Citizens gathered on September 28 for the dedication and unveiling of the
marker to a monument of Michiganís maritime history.

by Jeri Baron Feltner
Founding Director Emerita
DeTour Reef Light Preservation Society


The Michigan Historical Commission (MHC) of the Michigan Department of Transportation has recognized the DeTour Reef Light Station as a significant part of Michiganís history by awarding it an official State of
Marker "Dedication Day" - 9-28-2013 image. Click for full size.
By Anne O'Connell, September 28, 2013
3. Marker "Dedication Day" - 9-28-2013
In photo are: Dotty & John Witten, Jeri Baron Feltner, John & Sunny Covell, Mary Rogers, Janelle Dudeck, Tom Truscott, Ann Method Green, Joe Henne, Chuck Feltner, Dick Moehl, Paula & Dave Bardsley
Michigan Registered Historic Site (#2252) historical marker. The designation honors the DeTour Reef Light Station as an important and educational part of local and state history.

DeTour Reef Light Preservation Society (DRLPS), sponsor of the marker, erected the marker and had a dedication ceremony to commemorate this significant accomplishment on September 28 at the marker site on M-134 five miles west of DeTour Village at the far eastern end of Michiganís Upper Peninsula. Over 50 citizens attended to share in and witness this exciting historical event. Speakers at the dedication included:; Michigan Historical Commissioner Tom Truscott (who made the official dedication); DRLPS volunteers Ann Method Green (President), Dave Bardsley (Director), Dick Moehl (Founding Director Emeritus and past President of the Great Lakes Lighthouse Keepers Association), and Jeri Baron Feltner (Marker Program Chair and Founding Director Emerita); and Marge Ellenberger (Michigan Lighthouse Guide) who presented DRLPS with a framed Lighthouse Guide. Special supporters attending included a former keeper of the DeTour Reef Light Station in 1969-71 Floyd Colvin, Harry and Mike Ashley, brothers of Don Ashley who drowned while boating to shore for lighthouse supplies in 1971, and Terry Pepper, Executive Director of the Great Lakes Lighthouse Keepersí Association.

Michigan Historical Commissioner
DeTour Reef Light Station Built in 1931 image. Click for full size.
By Jeri Baron Feltner, July 2010
4. DeTour Reef Light Station Built in 1931
Tom Truscott performed a perfect dedication for the historical marker. He stated, “The hard work and dedication in restoring the DeTour Reef Light was the most outstanding preservation project I've had the honor of dedicating. The DeTour Reef Light Station has played a vital role in history of not only our country but the freedom of the world. My heart goes out to all of you in the DeTour Reef Light Preservation Society for your unselfish efforts."

“The official State of Michigan Marker for the DeTour Reef Light Station helps bring attention to this community icon treasure and the importance of its preservation,” said Jeri Baron Feltner, DRLPS Founding Director Emerita, and Chairperson of the Marker Project. “Educating the public and making them aware of this magnificent Michigan maritime monument with the historical marker is an outstanding way to preserve this important cultural resource and also help promotion of local tourism,” Feltner said.

After the dedication, a celebration of the marker and the DRLPS 15th year anniversary was held at the Mainsail Restaurant in DeTour Village.

Thank You To The Historical Marker Supporters

On behalf of the DeTour Reef Light Preservation Society, Jeri Baron Feltner, Marker Program Chairperson, would like to thank those who supported her with the marker project including
Marker with lighthouse in background image. Click for full size.
By Dr. Richard Borth, October 2, 2013
5. Marker with lighthouse in background
State personnel Laura Ashley, John Batchedler, Pat Casey, Brian Lijewski, Mary Patrick, Ron Rushton, Denise Sachau, Matt Siegfried; and DRLPS team: Dave Bardsley (leader of the installation team), Paula Bardsley, John and Sunny Covell, Chuck Feltner, and Ann Method Green; Matt Shultz and Duane Barbeaux of X-Factor Construction who donated their services to install the marker, Ron Hill of DeTour-Drummond Building Center who took delivery of the marker, and to Carol Martin (Drummond Island Digest publisher) for donated ad space; to those who assisted at the event: Janelle Dudeck, Marge Ellenberger, Judy Jones, Ann Herr, Dick Moehl, Chuck Muller, Anne OíConnell, Joyce Truscott, and Ted Sledz. Also, thank you to those who contributed funds to the Marker Project: Patricia Lehman Anderson, Dave and Paula Bardsley, former keeper Floyd Colvin (in honor of former keeper Don Ashley), former keeper John Decenzo, Chuck and Jeri Baron Feltner, and Dick Moehl. And, a special thank you to all those people who came to the dedication event to experience and support the unveiling of the DeTour Reef Light Station Michigan Historical Marker.

Michigan Historical Marker Program

State historical markers commemorate significant individuals, organizations, places, and events in Michigan history. These markers help communities throughout the state promote, preserve, and present
Dave Bardsley DRLPS Director - helping with marker installation image. Click for full size.
By Jeri Baron Feltner, September 26, 2013
6. Dave Bardsley DRLPS Director - helping with marker installation
Matt Schultz and Duane Barbeaux of X-Factor Contruction in DeTour Village volunteered services to install the marker.
their history for the education and enjoyment of residents and tourists of all ages. The Michigan Historical Marker Program operates under the direction of the Michigan Historical Commission and the Michigan Historical Center, agencies within the Department of Natural Resources, and partners with the Eastern Michigan University Historic Preservation Program to document and create the text for the markers. The State Historic Preservation Office determines whether the subject matter is eligible for listing in the State Register of Historic Sites. Since 1955, more than 1,700 state markers have been erected, making Michiganís program one of the largest privately funded historical marker programs in the nation. For more information on the state marker program, visit The Michigan Historical Marker Web Site www.michmarkers.com, whose mission is to promote knowledge of Michigan history and to encourage people to stop at these sites and learn more. An excellent resource is the book Traveling Through Time: A Guide to Michigan's Historical Markers by Laura Rose Ashley, Editor.

DeTour Reef Light Station Historical Marker

Located a mile offshore in northern Lake Huron at the far eastern end of Michiganís Upper Peninsula guarding the entrance to DeTour Passage in the St. Maryís River connecting to Lake Superior, the DeTour Reef Light Station stands proud as an icon of
Michigan Historical Commissioner Tom Truscott<br> with DRLPS Founding Director Emeritus Dick Moehl image. Click for full size.
By Jeri Baron Feltner, September 23, 2013
7. Michigan Historical Commissioner Tom Truscott
with DRLPS Founding Director Emeritus Dick Moehl
Tom Truscott gave the special Dedication to over 50 people that beautiful day on the shores of northern Lake Huron with the DeTour Reef Light Station shining on the horizon. Dick Moehl was President of the Great Lakes Lighthouse Keepers' Association 1983-2013.
Michiganís maritime history since 1931. The DRLPS, established in 1998 by local volunteers, restored the lighthouse with federal, state, and private funds, and has offered successful public tours and overnight keeper programs to the structure since 2005. The lighthouse was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2005.

DRLPS submitted application to the Michigan Historical Commission for the historical marker in December 2012, and worked with the state for several months for the proper documentation and review of the text and manufacturing. Delivery of the marker took place on September 26, 2013, and was dedicated on September 28. DRLPS funded the manufacture of the 42” x 54” aluminum casting marker, posts, and sponsor plaque. Sewah Studios of Marietta OH manufactured the marker. ""
 
Also see . . .
1. DeTour Reef Light Preservation Society. (Submitted on December 11, 2013, by Jeri Baron Feltner of Drummond Island, Michigan.)
2. Video - - "A Tour of the DeTour Reef Lighthouse" ::. (Submitted on December 13, 2013.)
3. Video - - "WildWeekendTV.com - Detour Reef Lighthouse" ::. (Submitted on December 15, 2013.)
 
DRLPS Director Chuck Feltner, Mike and Harry Ashley, and former DRL Keeper Floyd Colvin image. Click for full size.
By Jeri Baron Feltner, September 28, 2013
8. DRLPS Director Chuck Feltner, Mike and Harry Ashley, and former DRL Keeper Floyd Colvin
Mike and Harry lost their brother Don Ashley when he drowned in 1971 while making a service run to shore from the lighthouse. His body was never found. The brothers atrended the Marker Dedication in his loving memory.
DRLPS President Ann Method Green presented a Michigan Lighthouse Map by Marge Ellenberger image. Click for full size.
By Jeri Baron Feltner, September 28, 2013
9. DRLPS President Ann Method Green presented a Michigan Lighthouse Map by Marge Ellenberger
For more information about the Michigan Lighthouse Map, go to http://michiganlighthouseguide.com
DRLPS Founding Director Emerita and Marker Program Chair Jeri Baron Feltner image. Click for full size.
By Anne O'Connell, September 28, 2013
10. DRLPS Founding Director Emerita and Marker Program Chair Jeri Baron Feltner
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on December 11, 2013, by Jeri Baron Feltner of Drummond Island, Michigan. This page has been viewed 741 times since then and 28 times this year. Last updated on December 16, 2013, by Jeri Baron Feltner of Drummond Island, Michigan. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on December 11, 2013, by Jeri Baron Feltner of Drummond Island, Michigan.   5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10. submitted on December 16, 2013, by Jeri Baron Feltner of Drummond Island, Michigan. • Al Wolf was the editor who published this page.
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