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 Point Sherman, AK    
Lighthouse best viewed by boat or plane.
Description: The Point Sherman Light Station was
Point Sherman Lighthouse
Photograph courtesy U.S. Coast Guard
constructed during the summer of 1904 and was first lit on October 18 of that year. The light was similar to one constructed on Fairway Island and was displayed from a black hexagonal lantern room situated atop a white, hexagonal tower, six feet in height. A one-and-one-half story keeper's dwelling and a boathouse were located just east of the light.

Andrew Jackson must have been a fine lighthouse keeper if he devoted as much attention to the light as he did to his garden. On November 10, 1907, he submitted the following report on the seeds and plants he had been supplied from an experiment station.

The choice selection of garden seeds and the nursery stock which you kindly sent this station were duly received in excellent condition, and were planted. The apple trees made a growth of 10 to 20 inches in the season. The plum tree withered, but the balance of the trees are doing nicely. Red currants made an average growth of about 10 inches, with some fruit; the plants look well and strong. White currants took root and are doing well, but no fruit. Raspberries are doing nicely. The mint looks fine and horse-radish is doing nicely. The basket willows are growing slowly. The greater number of the hardy vegetables have done fairly well and I have found the seeds of good quality. The flower seeds did not germinate, although planted in boxes and kept in a good warm place. My greatest success has been with potatoes, and I was informed by Mr. P. J. Werlich, light-house inspector, that I had the largest potato tops that he had ever seen in Alaska. Some of these potato tops measured over 5 feet in height, so there is some reason to believe that his statement is well founded. Some of the potato hills contained from 20 to 40 potatoes, weighing from 6 to 8 pounds to the hill. The largest potato weighed 1 1/2 pounds. The potatoes from 20 hills would more than fill a sack, and those from 3 to 4 hills would fill a good-sized water pail. But all my potatoes were not like this, for some were small and not of good shape. This was where the ground had not received the proper amount of the right kind of fertilizer. Where no fertilizer was used the potatoes were no better than last year, although this was a more favorable summer than last year. This proves that the condition of the soil is of more importance than the weather. It will be a cold summer, indeed, when potatoes fail to grow in Lynn Canal, provided the soil is in proper condition. I succeeded in getting a fairly good stand of orchard grass, also white clover, which is still green and growing at this late date. The apple trees received in the spring of 1906 were almost destroyed by the snow last winter, which stripped off all of the branches. The raspberries made a growth of new stalks from 30 to 50 inches, but there were only a few berries this summer. Red and white currants are growing slowly and are in good condition, but there is no fruit this year.

The original light was disestablished and reduced to a minor light shortly before 1917. In 1932, the station was transferred to the Forest Service and replaced by a nearby buoy. A dayboard and a light were placed on the site of the original light in 1981.

Head Keepers: Andrew Jackson (1905 1909), Olaf Otteson (1909), David H. Somerville (1909 at least 1912).

References

  1. Lighthouses and Other Aids to Navigation in Alaskan History, U.S. Coast Guard.

Location: Located along the east side of Lynn Canal, eight miles south of Eldred Rock Lighthouse.
Latitude: 58.85467
Longitude: -135.15183

For a larger map of Point Sherman Lighthouse, click the lighthouse in the above map or get a map from: Mapquest.


Travel Instructions: Point Sherman Lighthouse, though a bit hidden, is visible from cruise ships and ferries that pass through Lynn Canal to and from Haines and Skagway. Specific options include the Alaska Marine Highway ferries and Alaska Fjordlines, Inc..

The lighthouse can also be seen from small planes that regularly fly between Juneau and Haines/Skagway.

The lighthouse is owned by the Coast Guard. Grounds/dwelling closed.

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