32¢ Split Rock Lighthouse, Lake Superior
Great Lakes Lighthouses
Issue Date: June 16, 1995
City: Cheboygan, MI
Printed By: Stamp Venturers
Printing Method: Photogravure
Perforations: 11.2 vertically
Since ancient times light has been used as a navigational aid for ships. The Egyptian King Ptolemy I ordered the creation of what was probably the world’s first lighthouse, which was completed in 285 B.C. This structure was about four hundred feet tall, and had an open fire as its light source. It was located on the Island of Pharos, and survived for nearly 1,500 years.
More than 3,000 years later, the Split Rock lighthouse protected ships from what has been called “the most dangerous piece of water in the world.” Congress appropriated $75,000 for a lighthouse to be located at this site on the rugged north shore of western Lake Superior after 28 ships were endangered and six lost in a storm in November of 1905. The lighthouse was completed in 1910, and remained in use until 1969. In 1971 it was deeded to Minnesota, and has been restored to its pre-1924 appearance.