The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Detroit Post and Tribune (Detroit, MI), Sat., June 7, 1884

Full Text

The McNaughton range lights, which mark the course to be taken by vessels entering the Sault Ste. Marie River from Lake Superior, were lighted for the first time last Wednesday. The following is the route for vessels bound down: In coming in from Point Iroquois to Round Island there will appear first two range lights, one red and the other bright, situated southeast of Round Island on the mainland of the American side. Run on this range until two similar lights come in range opposite Point aux Pines on the American side. Run on this range until a bright light appears from behind a shade on Point aux Pines wharf, and then continue down to Big Point until the government light comes in range. Continue this range to the canal. In going up keep the government range to Big Point and then steer for the light on Point aux Pines wharf. Continue around Point aux Pines lighthouse and then steer one point west of Round Island until the lights opposite Point aux Pines come in range. Continue until the lights southeast of Round Island come in range. Haul up on this range for Point Iroquois. Before the establishing of these ranges it was impossible for vessels or steamers to reach the Sault Ste. Marie canal after dark, and all boats arriving at night were forced to lay to for daylight. This caused a serious delay, which will now be entirely avoided.

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This gives some idea of how complex night navigation could be in the days before modern navigation aids - and this was the "new" system! No wonder so many boats went to the beach in Whitefish Bay!

Click here for a modern map of the area described:
Date of Original:
Sat., June 7, 1884
Local identifier:
Language of Item:
Dave Swayze
Copyright Statement:
Public domain: Copyright has expired according to the applicable Canadian or American laws. No restrictions on use.
Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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Detroit Post and Tribune (Detroit, MI), Sat., June 7, 1884