Brewster House Bed & Breakfast (Freeport, Maine Coast)

Category Archives: pemaquid point

Looking at Lighthouses: Pemaquid Point

December 11, 2012 by Scott Gile

Sunset at Pemaquid Point

We haven’t done as many posts about Maine lighthouses this year as in some years past. This isn’t because we’ve lost interest, or for any other reason but that we were afraid we might be boring our readers!

As summer vacations and fall foliage visits have gone by, we’ve had a bit more time to explore (as can readily be seen by the photos of Wolfe’s Neck Woods State Park in a post from just over a week ago). Last week we were able to get out to one of our favorite lighthouses, Pemaquid Point, at sunset.

Pemaquid Point Moonrise

We went looking for one of those spectacular shows of color that a great sunset can bring. Instead we found a much more subdued, but very interesting, sunset. But there was an added bonus. Just after sunset was moonrise, so we were able to get a nice photo of the lighthouse at moonrise, as well.

Ruth & Scott
Brewster House Bed & Breakfast, Freeport, Maine

Maine Lighthouses Near Freeport

February 28, 2012 by Scott Gile

You may also want to view our newer article, Touring Maine Lighthouses (with Lighthouse Map).

“Where is the nearest lighthouse?” “How long will it take to visit a lighthouse?” “Can we go up in a lighthouse?”

These and other questions are routinely asked by guests at Brewster House Bed & Breakfast in Freeport. A couple of years ago we wrote an article introducing some of our favorite lighthouses, and our Maine lighthouse map.

 

As you can see from the small version of the Maine lighthouse map, above, there are actually a number of lighthouses not far from our Freeport Maine bed and breakfast. The nearest ones you can see are off the coast just a little north on US-1, and can be seen from Harpswell Neck or from Bailey Island’s extreme end (called Land’s End), but neither is accessible without a boat. A bit farther up US-1, turning toward the coast from Bath, Maine, there are several small lighthouses along the Kennebec River, and can be seen from either side (from the road to Phippsburg, Maine, or from Georgetown Island), and then there are more lighthouses on islands offshore.

Similar to the smaller lighthouses elsewhere, Portland Harbor has two small lighthouses that can be visited, but the lighthouse most want to see in the Portland area is Portland Head Lighthouse. Commissioned by President George Washington, the lighthouse is the oldest in America, and is beautifully restored. The museum in the keeper’s house is very interesting, and provides wonderful insights into the life of the keeper, and area history. The park is a great place for a picnic, or to just while away the afternoon, watching kites overhead and sailboats on Casco Bay. You can only go up the tower at Portland Head on Maine Open Lighthouse Day, each year in September.

The nearest lighthouse where you can climb the tower is Pemaquid Point, near Bristol, Maine. It is about an hour from Brewster House, and is open whenever there is a volunteer available to assist you, seasonally. This lighthouse stands at the top of a rocky bluff, with ocean waves crashing on the rocks below, making a dramatic place to enjoy the lighthouse and the natural beauty of the area. As the map above indicates, there are many other lighthouses to explore, and quite a few of them are not far from our bed & breakfast. In fact, our Lighthouse Tour special will help you find your way to several of them!

Ruth & Scott
Brewster House Bed & Breakfast

Maine Lighthouse Tour (Part 2)

June 21, 2011 by Scott Gile

Last week we presented Part 1 of our Lighthouse Tour, heading south from Brewster House B&B in Freeport, Maine, and visiting Portland Head Lighthouse and Cape Elizabeth Light (Two Lights), as well as Cape Neddick Light (The Nubble).

This time we’ll turn to the north and take US-1 an hour or so north to Rockland, where you can optionally visit the Maine Lighthouse Museum. You can also go just a bit farther on US-1, to Camden, to enjoy the beautiful harbor town.

Owls Head Lighthouse

From Rockland, we’ll turn south, toward Owls Head, and visit Owls Head Lighthouse. The lighthouse, standing atop a small hill, but steep enough to require stairs to the top, overlooks Rockland Harbor and Penobscot Bay, providing magnificent views. The lighthouse was lighted in 1825 to help guide mariners safely into Rockland Harbor.

Leaving Owls Head, you may want to stop for a tour of the wonderful Owls Head Transportation Museum, with its antique automobiles, as well as old aeroplanes (all still in working order!) and more. Driving down the peninsula past Spruce Harbor and St. George, there are other lighthouses we can not see – Two Bush Island Light, Tenants Harbor Light, and Whitehead Light – all of which can only be seen from the water (or by air). Next we turn toward Port Clyde and Marshall Point Lighthouse. Be sure to visit the Port Clyde General Store, and view the harbor from their picnic tables (perhaps while eating lunch).

Marshall Point Lighthouse

Marshall Point Lighthouse, marking the entrance to Port Clyde Harbor, was first built in 1832, then rebuilt as it currently stands in 1857. The beautiful setting is popular with photographers, who gather at the site early, awaiting a spectacular sunset opportunity.

Returning to the north, we come to Thomaston, a lovely town with restored Victorian homes, shady trees, and a quaint downtown. Proceeding south on US-1, you’ll pass Moody’s Diner, where you can get almost anything, from a grilled cheese sandwich to a lobster dinner, and their blueberry pie (or ‘most any other you like) is always worth stopping for!

Pemaquid Point Light

At Damariscotta we’ll turn off US-1, pass through the pretty village, and follow Route 130 to the end, where we’ll visit Pemaquid Point Lighthouse. First built and lighted in 1827, the structure wasn’t sound, and was replaced in 1835. There is a magnificent view from the bluff where the lighthouse stands, and you can easily walk down the rocks to view the lighthouse from below. When volunteers are present you can go up in the tower, and there is a museum in the Keeper’s house.

The Cuckholds Light

Returning to Damariscotta and US-1, we can take the turnoff for Route 27 toward Boothbay Harbor, then turn toward West Boothbay and Newagen, where, near the end of Southport Island, we can see The Cuckolds Light. This lighthouse is not well known, and dates from 1892, when it was erected to prevent vessels from running aground on the ledges nearby.

We’ll return after a visit to Boothbay Harbor (and maybe an ice cream cone), taking US-1 south to Brewster House.

Get all the information on our Lighthouse Tour on our specials page.

Let’s Look at Lighthouses: Pemaquid Point Lighthouse

August 10, 2010 by Scott Gile

Pemaquid Point Lighthouse, late 1800's
Pemaquid Point Lighthouse, late 1800’s

As our “Let’s Look at Lighthouses” series continues, we travel up US-1 from Freeport about 40 minutes or so to the pretty village of Damariscotta, on the Damariscotta River, where we travel through town, then out the peninsula to Pemaquid Point and Pemaquid Point Lighthouse.

Marking the entrance to Muscongus Bay just to the east, and John’s Bay to the west, Pemaquid Point lighthouse was ordered built by President John Quincy Adams in 1827. The original tower was of rubblestone, and did not last long – some speculate that the lime mortar may have been mixed with salt water, weakening the bond. The replacement tower was built in 1835, at a height of 35 feet to the lantern deck, and high above the beautiful rocks that lead to the water some 79 feet below.

Because the lighthouse was perched so high above the water, and the rocky bluff, it was very difficult to transport oil and supplies to the station. Lighthouse tenders had to anchor near the rocks, which was quite hazardous.

Pemaquid Point lighthouse, 2006

Pemaquid Point saw its share of wrecks, as the combination of treacherous rocks and Atlantic storms brought ships against the rocks in heavy fog. In 1903 two schooners suffered tragedy in the same storm. Later, in 1917, another struck the rocks, and while the crew escaped safely, the ship and its cargo was lost.

The town of Bristol purchased the keeper’s house in 1940, and maintains the grounds and its small park area, plus operating a small fishermen’s museum.

In 2007 the lighthouse tower was refurbished and strengthened, as well as being repainted.

Pemaquid Point lighthouse remains one of the most photographed, painted and admired lighthouses along the Maine coast, and is a favorite of many – appearing on the Maine U.S. quarter dollar in 2003.

Additional information:

U.S. Coast Guard, Lighthouses in Maine

New England Lighthouses: A Virtual Guide

Jeremy D’Entremont, The Lighthouses of Maine (2009)

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