Whereas, in 1821, the United States of America purchased three acres of land at Rocky Point on the Marblehead Peninsula to build a lighthouse to guide ships safely into the Sandusky Bay and around the coast of the peninsula; and
Whereas, stonemason, William Kelly and his crew built the lighthouse in the fall of 1821 from Sept. 14 to Nov. 10 and in the following year, the light tower was outfitted, a keeper’s house was built and the Sandusky Bay Lighthouse was officially lit on June 22, 1822; and
Whereas, Revolutionary War veteran, Benajah Wolcott was the first keeper of the light and after his passing, his wife Rachel became the first female lightkeeper on the Great Lakes and through the years the lighthouse saw the fifteen light keepers and four assistant keepers and sometimes including their families that kept the light going from 1822 to 1946 when the United States Coast Guard assumed care of the light; and
Whereas, the lightkeepers were responsible for rescuing or mounting a rescue for any ship in distress until 1876 when the Point Marblehead Lifesaving Station was founded; and
Whereas, the Sandusky Bay Lighthouse was renamed the Marblehead Lighthouse in 1870 and was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1969; and
Whereas, the Marblehead Lighthouse and grounds were officially named Ohio’s 73rd State Park in 1998; and
Now, Therefore, I, Jacqueline A. Bird, Mayor of the Village of Marblehead, Township of
Danbury, County of Ottawa, and State of Ohio, do hereby recognize the 200th Anniversary of the Marblehead Lighthouse for standing as a beacon, guiding ships and boats through the perils of fog and darkness, and enduring the ravages of storms, wind and waves.
May it continue to be a monument to the courage of the people who built it, maintained it, risked their own lives to rescue others and kept the light shining night after night, year after year.
May it proudly remain the oldest lighthouse in continuous operation on the Great Lakes.
In Witness Whereof, I hereby set my hand and official seal this 22nd day of June, 2022.
Jacqueline A. Bird, Mayor,
Village of Marblehead, Ohio