Digest>Archives> August 2002

The Two Lights of Grand Lake St. Marys

By Jeremy D'Entremont

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Northwood Lighthouse

Once part of a vast forested wilderness, Ohio's 13,500-acre Grand Lake St. Marys was constructed in 1845 as a feeder reservoir for the Miami-Erie Canal, and it was long recognized as the largest man-made reservoir in the world. It lost that distinction with the construction of the Hoover Dam and Lake Mead. Today Grand Lake St. Marys, one of the first areas in the state to be dedicated as an Ohio state park in 1949, is a popular place for swimming, boating, camping and fishing. There are also two lighthouses adding interest along the lake's shores.

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Rotary Lighthouse

Many know the Northwood Lighthouse, on the north side of the lake at Northmoor, as "Eddystone Lighthouse." It was built as a monument to the famous beacon of the same name in the English Channel. It operated for a time as a seasonal aid to navigation.

In 1986, the Celina Rotary Club built an operational 40-foot lighthouse on the west bank of the lake. A wrought iron observation deck on the tower provides visitors with a beautiful view.

The Northwood Lighthouse must be viewed from the lake, as access is through private property. The Rotary Lighthouse is near the intersection of Main Street (U.S. Route 127) and Lake Shore Drive in Celina.

This story appeared in the August 2002 edition of Lighthouse Digest Magazine. The print edition contains more stories than our internet edition, and each story generally contains more photographs - often many more - in the print edition. For subscription information about the print edition, click here.

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