Lighthouse Handbook

Have you seen the Historic Lighthouse Preservation Handbook? If you are curious how the Northwest Schooner Society team (and other groups like ours) make renovation decisions, you should check out the Handbook. The Nation Parks Service put this publication together in partnership with the Coast Guard, the U. S. Lighthouse Society, and the Department of Defense Legacy Resource Management Program and it’s a great resource for folks interested in historical construction and┬ápreservation techniques as well as anyone passionate about lighthouses.

You can read the Handbook here:

Lighthouse, 1929

Burrows Island Lighthouse, 1929

Gorgeous, right? In this official Coast Guard image, the lighthouse is shown against a backdrop of Puget Sound. If you look carefully, you can see the kelp bed just below the light station was just as vigorous back then. It seems there is an owl perched on the chimney, too. I love that the door is open, offering a tantalizing glimpse inside.

Compare that image (courtesy of the US Coast Guard) to one taken in September 2012.


The lighthouse looks remarkably similar today, with very little having been changed on the exterior aside from the doors and the whitewashing of the trim, which were originally painted a light gray to contrast with the walls. Over the course of time, however, neglect has left the lighthouse in less-than-perfect condition:


Gutter Grass

We are looking forward to getting the lighthouse and the rest of the light station back into shape. It will take the help of many volunteers as well as cash investment of as much as $500,000. If you’d like to learn more, peruse our very detailed to-do lists or read a summary of the restoration process. You can also jump right in and help by making a donation on our secure FirstGiving site.

Seed Money? Speed Money!

Window Replacement

We’ve gotten some exciting grants for the preservation of the lighthouse this year, but all of them are very specific about what the funds can be used for. Unfortunately, many essentials (such as insurance and gas to boat out to the island) are not covered. If you’d like to make a big difference in the progress of the lighthouse restoration, consider making a donation:

FirstGiving is a secure donation site and any size gift is appreciated.