Web Resources for Great Lakes Lighthouse research
Over the past few years a number of excellent research resources appear on the Internet. Here are links to those we consider to be the most useful. Please email us with any additional resources you feel should be included.

Google Books. This is a growing motherload of information. A number of Light Lists, Federal reports, annual reports of the Lighthouse Board and Bureau of Lighthouses have already been digitized, and more are being added every day. All books in the collection are fully searchable.
Making of America. A fully searchable digital library of 10,000 books and 50,000 journals from the 19th century. The collection is particularly strong in the subject areas of science and technology, so it contains an amazing wealth of information on lighthouse technology.
The Library of Congress. An amazing collection of fully searchable books and documents in the Library of Congress collection. Particularly useful for identifying the dates when appropriations for lighthouses were made, and various legislation passed relative to lighthouse operations.
NewspaperArchive.Com While this website is not free, the reasonable annual membership fee is well worth paying, since you can search through thousands of newspapers from around the US. A treasure trove of information on a number of Great Lakes lighthouses and keepers.
AddAll Used and Out-Of-Print Books. When you are looking for a copy of a specific book, AddAll Books is a search engine which searches the inventories of over 40 online bookstores and over 20,000 online book dealers. If you can't find it here, it probably doesn't exist.
Historical Collection of the Great Lakes at Bowling Green State University. One of the largest online databases of Great Lakes vessel and photo information. Great for researching vessels which ran into problems near a particular lighthouse. Search for a particular vessel by virtually any parameter.
The David Swayze Great Lakes Shipwreck File. Mr. Swayze has been compiling shipwrecks and accidents from old book and newspaper reports, and the fruits of his labor have been placed online in a searchable database format. It is the perfect source for finding maritime accidents which occurred near your lighthouse.
  Seeing The Light - Lighthouses of the western Great Lakes. Terry Pepper's website features histories of all the lighthouses on lakes Huron, Michigan and Superior. Also features keeper listings for each light.
1891 History of the Great Lakes. Volume I by J. B. Mansfield. An online version of J. B. Mansfield's seminal maritime history of the Great Lakes. Transcribed chapter by chapter. A great resource for identifying how lighthouses served the maritime community.
Maritime History of the Great Lakes. A wonderful collection of transcribed and scanned primary resource documents related to Great Lakes maritime history. Includes searchable entries from a number of 19th century Canadian and US newspapers.
The Political Graveyard. While best known as a resource to identify where politicians and famous people are interred, this site also serves as an amazingly comprehensive political biography. Great for putting political offices with names found during research and vice-versa.
Michigan County Histories and Atlases. This collection contains 428 digitized titles (many composed of multiple volumes) published before 1923. No better place to search for area histories and biographies of notable people, including numerous lighthouse keepers.
The Harbours and Ports of Lake Ontario by Edward M. Hodder. Transcribed 1857 book containing charts, a description of each harbor, description of lighthouses, harbour lights, water depths, courses and distances. Each chapter opens in a separate window for easy reading.
Lighthousing.Net An active bulletin board frequented by some knowledgeable people in the lighthouse world. A great place to post historical questions, especially those of a technical nature. Must be a member to post, but there is no charge and no personal information needs to be provided to join.
University of Wisconsin Digital Collection. Digitized and searchable materials relating to Wisconsin history. The collection includes published material as well as archival materials. The materials were digitized from a variety of formats including books, manuscripts, sound recordings, photographs, maps and other resources.
  How To Research in an Archive. An introduction to conducting research in archives written by the Library and Archives of Canada
  Finding Primary Historical Resources from the University of Berkley. A definition of what constitutes a Primary Historical Resource, and suggestions as to where to find them.

Please contact us with any additional recommended Internet research resources