Quote Originally Posted by David O'Reilly View Post
11-06-2013, 05:15 PM

Scott how long was it before the stone lighthouse was constructed and put in to use? And what was done in the mean time? Was there a temporary structure constructed?
From Dorothy Turcotte's book;
In 1838, a lighthouse was built on the south side of the canal, and a lighthouse keeper was hired. He and the ferryman worked together, and each had a house by the canal. George Thompson was hired as lighthouse keeper in April of 1845, and he remained in the post until March of 1875. During that period, he kept a diary which provides us with some of the most important information and insight into the Canal and its surroundings at that time.
Piers, lighthouse and houses at first were all made of wood. On July 18th, 1856, sparks from the steamer Ranger set fire to the pier. Before the day was over, the lighthouse and both the ferryman's and the lighthouse keeper's homes had been destroyed. The brick house built for the lighthouse keeper as a replacement is still standing by the Canal, and is still occupied by the lighthouse keeper. At the close of the 1987 shipping season, the Canadian Coast Guard's present lighthouse keeper will become "surplus to departmental requirements", and an era will end. The house is on Hamilton LACAC's inventory of heritage buildings that should be preserved.
In September of 1856, a lighthouse was built at the end of the southeast pier.
Two years later, work began on a beautiful stone lighthouse on the south bank of the Canal. Built by John Brown who had constructed the six famous Imperial Towers on Lake Huron and Georgian Bay, the Burlington Canal lighthouse is the twin of the one on Christian Island. It is 55 feet high, and is constructed of white dolomite limestone.
This fine lighthouse still stands. Now looking rather grimy, and dwarfed by the Skyway, its brilliant white stone made it the chief landmark on the Beach for many years. It, too, is considered to be an important heritage building.
Lighthouse keepers have proudly taken hundreds of visitors to the top of this structure to marvel at the view. George Thompson often wrote of taking parties of tourists to the top of the lighthouse. Even in the 1940's, "going up in the lighthouse" was a great treat.
The old, burned pier and lighthouse were demolished in 1860.