Thursday, January 27, 2011

Daniel and the "ghost" from Seul Choix Point Lighthouse..

Click twice to look close up
So back in 2004 we took a trip to the UP to see Cherie and Ted in Gould City and made a few day trips to see Lake Superior at Grand Marais, hike the trails at Tahquamenom Falls, and climb up the lighthouse at Seul Choix Point lighthouse in Gulliver on the Northern shore of Lake Michigan.

The Seul Choix Point lighthouse might just be the last working lighthouse where they let you climb the winding stairway up the tower to get a firsthand view from the tippy top.  (during the day!)

Steven and Daniel reflecting on the light bulb and lens

Part of the tour includes a stroll through the home where the Lightkeepers and their families used to live at the base of the tower.  There are antique pictures, clothes, furniture and appliances all on display in this working historical museum.  A few things for sale in the store, but this is no tourist trap.

Another part of the tour goes into how the Lighthouse is allegedly haunted by the ghost of Mr. James Townshend a Captain of a Great Lakes ship who suffered a mysterious and tragic death in 1910 at Seul Choix while visiting his brother Joseph, the Lightkeeper at the time.  There are all sorts of anecdotes about cigar smoke drifting in from nowhere and silverware moving around and unexplained tapping noises.  It was featured on an episode of Scariest Places on Earth.  Cool side story to go along with an exhilarating trip up the stairs and a spectacular view of the Lake.  Highly recommended for any visitors to the UP.

Now the story about the picture at the top. We didn't think much of the legend of the ghost of Seul Choix until we got home and looked at the pictures. The one of Daniel near the trees below the tower shows an odd purplish blur over his head.   Maybe the ghost knew how much Daniel hated and tried to avoid getting his picture taken back then.  Look at the kid's glare in the photo.   I would just write it off as reflected sunlight, but it was a cloudy day and we were between rows of trees out of the direct sun. One coincidence, it was the 94th anniversary of Townshend's death. hmmm.

Anyway, we liked the place so much we commissioned artist Leo Kuschel to make a painting of the lighthouse using some of our pictures to refresh his memory. He called a couple months later to tell us the painting was done and to come pick it up.  It's hanging in the house next to the Westcott II.  FYI,  Leo is still selling prints of it.  I think it is his finest painting of a lighthouse, and that is saying something. 

To think, it all happened because a ghost photobombed a camera-shy kid.

See the purplish blur in the sky?


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