Thursday, August 6, 2009

I Love ME!

Maine, that is. Although I am quite fond of myself, I certainly wouldn't blog about me...

It is so beautiful here! Rocky coastlines and lots of green. Jeff's sister, her hubby and two boys live here. We came to visit, along with Jeff's parents from Tucson, and aunts from Albuquerque, and to help celebrate Jeff's Dad's birthday.

Our first tourist stop was the Portland Head Lighthouse, just south of Portland in Cape Elizabeth at Fort Williams Park.

In 1787, the General Court of Massachusetts (the Massachusetts legislature) provided $750 to begin construction of a lighthouse. In 1790, when the United States Government took over the responsibility of all lighthouses, Congress appropriated $1,500 for its completion. The original tower measured 72' from base to lantern deck and was lit with 16 whale oil lamps. It was first lit on January 10, 1791.

On April 13, 1899, President McKinley named the one-time subpost of Fort Preble, Cape Elizabeth's first military fortification, Fort Williams. Named after Brevet Major General Seth Williams, Fort Williams grew to be a tremendous military asset during World War II. Besides protecting the shoreline of Cape Elizabeth, the infantry and artillery units provided the Harbor Defense for Portland. After the war, many of the forts in Casco Bay were closed, including Fort Williams, which traded in its defense of the coast for caretaker status and Army Reserve accommodations. Fort Williams was officially closed and deactivated on June 30, 1963.

With all the rocks jutting out from the shore, it's easy to see why a lighthouse was needed here.

Late on Christmas Eve in 1886, the three masted bark Annie C. Maguire struck the ledge at Portland Head. Keeper Joshua Strout, his son, wife, and volunteers rigged an ordinary ladder as a gangplank between the shore and the ledge the ship was heeled against. Captain O'Neil, the ship's master, his wife, two mates, and the nine man crew clambered onto the ledge and then to safety . The cause of the wreck is puzzling since visibility was not a problem. Members of the crew reported they "plainly saw Portland Light before the disaster and are unable to account for same."

Jeff, CJ and our nephew Matthew had a wonderful time out on the rocks that have caused so many problems for the boats in these waters.


  1. Was a ghost involved? Love all those rocky shoreline pics - so beautiful! I'm glad you loved ME!

  2. These shots are so stunning! My fav. is the one with the lighthouse and the sea in the BG. WOW!! I hope to someday see something this beautiful! TFS!