South Manitou Island Light Station

Historican Structure and
Cultural Landscape Report

The South Manitou Island Light Station is the only extant lighthouse in the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, and is a significant reminder of a utilitarian yet very important profession which no longer exists in the United States. It is a testament to the historical role of the lighthouse keeper and a distinct way of life.

Because of the island's relatively easy accessibility, as well as the presence of a historically significant light station (and island community), South Manitou Island attracts a large number of visitors. The light station is just one of many cultural resources on the island, yet its prominence and visibility, perhaps more than any other structure on the island, is a tangible reminder of the day of early commercial navigation on Lake Michigan, and the important role that the light played in navigating ships through the Manitou Passage.

The South Manitou Island Complex and Lifesaving Station were placed on the National Register of Historic Places on October 28, 1983.

Author: National Park Service

South Manitou Island Light Station
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