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Public tours of Port Washington Lighthouse offer glimpse into life of keeper, his family in 19th century

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Port Washington Lighthouse and Light Station

PORT WASHINGTON —┬áPublic tours began at the Port Washington Lighthouse and Light Station Museum on Memorial Day, and they continue through mid-October — Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, with special tours offered by appointment.

According to the Port Washington Historical Society, in late 2000, a restoration began at the 1849 Light Station, including the iconic 1860 lighthouse that guided 19th and early 20th century Lake Michigan traffic.

The destroyed tower and lantern were replicated by craftsmen of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and donated to the society, while volunteers assisted by paid contractors restored the facades and recreated the interior of the living quarters and outbuildings, according to the Port Washington Historical Society.

Now, visitors are able to tour the restored quarters that depict the life of a lightkeeper and his family in the 19th century and enjoy spectacular views of Lake Michigan and the surrounding area from the light tower.

The former watch shack/backup generator building has additional museum exhibits that feature maritime and local memorabilia and historic artifacts.

The property, maintained and managed by Port Washington Historical Society volunteers, is sustained through private funding.

Tours are conducted by volunteer guides.

Port Washington Lighthouse and Light Station Museum

FOX6’s Evan Peterson took a tour of the Port Washington Lighthouse and Light Station Museum, located at 311 Johnson Street on Sunday morning, July 2nd during FOX6 WakeUp News.


Tours are offered as follows:

Fridays and Sundays 12:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Saturdays 11:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Special tours by appointment.

Fees are as follows:

$5.00 adults
$1.00 children

Tour Groups: $6.00 for adults; $2.00 children

CLICK HERE to learn much more about the Port Washington Lighthouse and Light Station, including a history of "Light Station Keepers" dating back to 1849!

The Port Exploreum is "a museum experience that explores and orients families and visitors to Port Washington's rich historical past, and connects with their future." It's located 118 N. Franklin Street (just down the street from the lighthouse), and is courtesy the Port Washington Historical Society, as a result of a generous initial gift by an anonymous donor.