In 1877, a two-story, cast-iron light station, then referred to as the Menominee Pierhead Lighthouse, was constructed on the northern end of the mouth of the Menominee River. The tower itself was painted white, and it housed a ruby-glass lantern, providing a gleaming, red beacon of nautical safety for 12 miles.
Over the next decade, the lighthouse was relocated further offshore twice, and in 1917, it acquired the red paint scheme we recognize today. However, it wasn’t until 1927 that the wooden pier leading up to the lighthouse was replaced with a concrete pier. From 1939 to 2002, the U.S. Coast Guard assumed responsibility for operating and maintaining the lighthouse.
In 2008, the City of Menominee took over possession of the lighthouse from the U.S. Coast Guard and, with the help of a private donor, have completed several projects to improve the site’s beautification and public access. The historical society provides tours of the interior of the lighthouse, organized by enthusiast Skip Heckel, throughout the summer months.
* Participants who gather stamps for the U.S. Lighthouse Society’s Passport Program can get their passports stamps at the Menominee North Pier Lighthouse and Menominee Heritage Museum between Memorial Day and Labor Day. When these facilities are closed, throughout the rest of the year, passports can be stamped at Spies Public Library.