Posts Tagged ‘lighthouse


For Valentine’s Day – “The Frozen Lovers”

There was a terrible storm in December of 1850, with several ships going aground in Penobscot Bay, Maine. About midnight the storm picked up and the winds were howling. One small schooner had anchored earlier, intending to wait the storm out and continue to Boston the next day.
The captain had gone ashore and left his first mate, a seaman and one passenger on board. When the winds intensified, the schooner broke free, was blown across the bay to Owl’s Head, and crashed into the rocky ledges.
The 3 on board were not injured, but were exposed to the storm and waves and were soon soaked. They wrapped themselves in blankets to try to stay warm. As the schooner began to break apart, the seaman, Roger Elliott, scrambled ashore over ice coated rocks and eventually made his way to a road.
It was the road to the Owl’s Head Lighthouse and fortunately the lighthouse keeper was going by in a sleigh and saw the exhausted, freezing man. He quickly took him home and put him to bed (after a hot rum). Roger told the keeper about the 2 left on the schooner.
About a dozen men were called out for the rescue and made it to the schooner before it had totally broken apart. They found the 2 wrapped in each others arms under a blanket which was covered in ice! They seemed to be dead, but the rescuers would not take a chance and took them to the keeper’s house where they chopped the ice off of the pair and then placed them in cold water. The water temperature was slowly raised and the limbs of the pair were gently exercised and massaged.
After about 2 hours the passenger, Lydia Dyer, began to come to and within the next hour Richard Ingraham did as well!
During the sharing of the events, it became known that the pair were engaged to be married and thought, as they were freezing on the wrecked schooner, they’d never have a chance to share their vows. It was many months before they were totally recovered, but they did marry and had 4 children, living very near Owl’s Head, Maine and extremely thankful for Roger Elliot’s bravery.
Check my Facebook page for a Valentine poem written for a medium in 1875.

Maine Lighthouses

We’ve been doing a lot lately with Maine Lighthouses. They are so iconic and romantic and full of history! Do you think many are haunted? It seems that may be the case!

We actually do know quite a few tales of haunted lighthouses, in fact one is on the cover of our most recent book, “Ghost of the Boothbay Region.”

Maine has over 60 lighthouses, many of which are open to the public or at least able to be seen  by land. Others are visible by short boat trips. Several have museums or informational centers and gift shops. In Rockland, the Maine Lighthouse Museum is open year round.

Next month, on Saturday, May 21, I will be leading a special Lighthouse Cruise that will view 5 lighthouses in the Boothbay Harbor area (weather permitting) and then stop at Burnt Island Lighthouse for an up close look at the tower as well as the outbuildings and keeper’s house.

You’ll learn about the lives of some of the keeper’s – their joys as well as hardships, their routines and their families. I’m sure I won’t be able to resist a ghost story or two, as well!

This is a morning cruise, so you’ll have time for lunch and some exploring in the Boothbay area in the afternoon. The link to purchase tickets is below.

In the late summer and fall, we’ll also be doing some Lighthouse Legends and Lore cruises with Maine Maritime Museum. These will also include much history as well as haunted tales and ghost stories. The link to purchase tickets for these cruises is below, though I don’t think they are listed yet, so keep checking!

Hope to see you soon!


Maine Place Names

On a recent “Haunted Lighthouse Cruise” on the Kennebec River with Maine Maritime Museum, we were discussing Maine place names. Most of the ones we were talking about were Native American names, such as Kennebec, Sasanoa, Arrowsic, and Seguin.

Then the discussion led to the strange phenomena that Maine has of having place names of Peru, Rome, China, Naples, Mexico, Poland, Sweden, Lisbon, Denmark, Vienna, Paris, Stockholm, Madrid, Moscow and Norway.

There is also Frankfort and Bremen of German heritage (not Dresden – Pownalborough was renamed Dresden just because the Probate Judge liked the sound of it!). Belfast and Limerick are of Irish background, as well as more, I’m sure.

Many of our place names are of English origin due to the majority of the settlers coming from Great Britain. Maine also has a fair amount of Finnish history, which you might run across.

Of course we also have Union, Hope, Freedom, Unity, Liberty, Friendship, and Harmony which are fairly self explanatory. As are Washington, Lincoln, Jefferson, etc.

I won’t even start on Maine island names – that may be another blog entry!

The point of all this is that we tend to believe that place names came from the name of an early settler or the place that the early settlers came from or in honor of a person or a value.

There are other reasons!

China and Poland were named after songs/hymns that the person in charge happened to like at the time.

Some towns chose their names in solidarity with a country that was having independence conflicts at the time; Mexico and Peru for example. Others chose names out of respect for how the countries handled certain conflicts or battles, such as Moscow and Denmark.

Paris was named such in recognition of France’s help during the American Revolution, as was Camden, after a Lord Camden of England who was sympathetic with the colonies.

I, frankly, am amazed that in the 1700 and 1800’s, Maine people were so aware and knowledgeable of world happenings and felt such sympathy. It’s quite a statement, one that could be said to stand today.



Hello Friends, It has been a while! It was a busy winter, personally and business wise, but we are up and running and expecting a fantastic season!

It is just one week until the official start of summer and I think we (at least in the Northeast) are ready. We will be having a special Solstice Eve tour in Camden on Friday June 20 to celebrate.

This year we have added 2 new towns, Hallowell and Rockland, bringing our total to 7 fascinating Maine spots for history and mystery! I hope you can join us on one of these new Haunted History walks. We continue to have several Cemetery Tours available.

Something else new and different are “Ghosts on the Coast” river cruises with the Damariscotta River Tripper. We’ll be having one special 2 hour trip in July and one in August, both in the late afternoon, so that guests can enjoy the scenery as well as a few tales of mysteries and hauntings. If you’re interested in tickets, here is a link to the website.

There will be a new offering in Wiscasset beginning in July, but we’re not quite ready to divulge yet, stay tuned! Of course, we will continue to offer our Full Moon Tours and occasional specials as well.

In addition, our sister company, Mysterious Destinations, offers small group Lighthouse Lore trips (from 1 to 4 days), Paranormal Investigations once a month, and our annual Halloween “Overnight with Myrtle.” For further information, check the website.

We certainly hope to see you in some way or another soon – thanks for following!


National Lighthouse Day

With over 60 lighthouses in the state of Maine, today is a day to be observed for sure. Many of Maine’s lighthouses are open to the public and some have unique museums in the “keeper’s” house. There is also a Lighthouse Museum in Rockland.
There are short ones, tall ones, squat ones, double ones, striped ones, famous ones and on and on… my favorite is the Pemaquid Point Light, which is on the Maine State Quarter.
Lighthouses are such unique symbols of long ago, though of course, they still serve a purpose today. The first known lighthouse, Pharos of Alexandria, Egypt, was completed about 280 B.C. It stood more than 350 feet tall until an earthquake destroyed it in the 1300’s.
Do you think lighthouses are romantic? I think some people do, but in reality I’m pretty sure they were lonely, desolate places that required immense responsibility and long hours of work. I’d go and stay in one today, but I don’t think I’d have wanted to be a “keeper”!
Here’s an incredibly sad story of newlyweds who were stationed on Boon Island Light in southern Maine in the 1800’s. Boon Island Light happens to be the tallest of all Maine lights with 168 steps leading to the top of the tower. After only about 4 months of “keeping” the light, there was quite a winter storm and a high tide was sweeping over the island. While Keeper Bright was trying to secure their little boat, he either slipped or was knocked down on the rocks. His wife, Katherine, was able to drag him to safety to the foot of the stairs of the tower, and immediately took over the lighthouse duties. It is unclear whether Keeper Bright died immediately, or at some point over the next 5 days while his wife was “keeping” the light. More than likely she did this without much time for eating or sleeping or caring for her husband (and don’t forget those 168 steps!). On the 6th day, local fishermen noticed the light was out and went to investigate. They found Katherine cradling her dead husband’s body at the foot of the stairs… she died soon after.
Of course, as a history lover, they intrigue me, but many of Maine’s lighthouses and/or keeper’s houses are reported to be haunted, so that’s an added bonus. In fact they’re so intriguing that we’ve put together a Maine Haunted Lighthouse Tour! We have one next week, which, of course, is too late to join, but there is still space available for our September tour, if you’d like to join us. Here is a link FMI.


The Lady’s Musings…

I had a great time tonight with the folks who turned out for “Haunted Lighthouses of Maine”! They were a great group and had some interesting ghost stories to share – I always love to hear other’s stories!

Lighthouse lore is so fascinating – I learned a lot doing research for this, and there’s yet more to learn. Running into Abbie Burgess (“Keep the Lights Burning, Abbie”) again was fun. I sometimes think the wives and children of lighthouse keepers were just as stalwart as the men!

Two of the lighthouses we talked about tonight were Abenaki names, Matinicus and Seguin. It’s amazing to think about the Native Americans venturing that far out to sea in their canoes!

Next week I get to take some school children on walks; always rewarding and fun for me! I hope it doesn’t pour like it did today! I always hope to instill a love of history in the kids. History was something that was always part of my growing up, and obviously stuck with me!

Take a minute to think of your history… and enjoy!


Haunted Maine Lighthouses

Into lighthouses? Haunted ones?

The Lady in the Red Cloak will be telling some haunted Maine lighthouse stories, as well as a brief history of each, at an Adult Education class later this month (April).

If you want to read more about it, or sign up for the class, please go to this link for MSAD40, Hopefully I’ll see you there!

A different Haunted Lighthouse opportunity is available in August, put on by my sister company, Mysterious Destinations. It is a 4 day/3 night bus tour of coastal Maine in which we’ll stop at 7 lighthouses and hear tales of many more! There will be the opportunity to do some searching for paranormal activity, if you wish, at most of the stops. There will be instruction on “ghost hunting equipment” and there will be equipment available for guests to use. We’ll also offer walking tours of 3 haunted Maine villages telling a few ghost stories along the way, and a stop at the Maine Lighthouse Museum. Check it all out at

I hope you’re enjoying Spring – if you’re experiencing Spring anyway! We had snow flurries yesterday and today here in Maine!

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