Out of all the things to do in Put-in-Bay, one of the most memorable historic sites is the South Bass Island Lighthouse and it is a must-see! When you come to the South Bass Island Lighthouse you are getting a two for one: a fascinating piece of Put-in-Bay history, and some of the best views of Lake Erie from anywhere on this island or any other island. Plus, if you’re really lucky, you’ll be here on one of the guided tour dates, because then you’ll also get to learn an incredible amount about our amazing lake.
About The Lighthouse
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the South Bass Island Lighthouse has a feature that makes it stand out amongst other lighthouses of the time period. Generally, lighthouses of the time had a tall lighthouse tower that stood separate from the detached house that was the home of the lighthouse keeper. The South Bass Island Lighthouse, however, has the lighthouse tower built into the home. Another unique fact about the lighthouse, this one modern-day, it is the only lighthouse in the United States that is owned by a university, in this case, the Ohio State University. They host occasional guided tours of the grounds. However, public access is not just during these tours. The grounds are typically open, although they host occasional private events that they close the ground for.
As for the property itself, you will find it at just about the southernmost tip of the island. On the property stands an 1899 barn, as well as an 1897 oil house. There is also a meteorological station, maintained by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. They use the station to provide weather statistics for Lake Erie to the National Weather Service.
2018 tour dates will be June 9th, July 18th, August 11th, September 8th, and October 13th, from 11:00 AM to 5:00 PM. If your group is larger than 10, call ahead and you can schedule a private tour. Click here for more info.
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