Saturday, July 30, 2016

The (Not) Haunted Light at Newport-by-the-Sea

For years, I've wanted to take my kids to the Newport Bay Lighthouse and tell them about the ghost story that was never supposed to be real.  I remember seeing the story, presented as true, while watching television at  a friend's house one afternoon. A few years later, my grandfather was volunteering at the actual "haunted" lighthouse and I found out that the story was a piece of fiction written in 1899 by Lischen Miller. You can read The Haunted Light at Newport-by-the-Sea over at Offbeat Oregon, along with an article about how the story became accepted as a true one.

I'd been putting off our visit because I had my lighthouses confused and thought that the Newport Bay lighthouse was the one you had to reserve tickets in person for. Turns out that that was the Newport Head lighthouse, which replaced the Newport Bay lighthouse after only a few years.

We visited that one too, and I'm awfully proud of myself for making it up to the  top with only one short break to catch my breath.

Back to the lighthouse I meant to visit...the pictures on display make it easy to understand why it deserves a scary story. I had a hard time convincing my youngest that it was a lighthouse, because the living quarters are part of the same building and it's so short that it really doesn't look much like a lighthouse.

The rooms have been restored and furnished with pieces donated by the local historical society. I was really intrigued by this quilt, but couldn't get a decent picture while staying on the right side of the rope. Those ostriches remind me of the Bird of Paradise quilt. I think I see a few other familiar blocks, too, but the angle is too weird for me to be sure.

I'm positive that I saw the lighthouse story on an episode of Zoom, but can't find anything about that episode online. I know it was at Jaqueline's house and she always insisted on watching that show after school, but I suppose it could have been another show on after that one. Is anyone else out there the right age to remember?


diannamcheck said...

Lighthouses are amazing. We have so many here in New England. Never been in one but hope to one day.

sewbusy said...

Zoom or Reading Rainbow?

Michelle said...

Not Reading Rainbow unless it was one of the very first episodes. Whatever show it was would have aired in the very early 1980s.

Anonymous said...

I have no clue, but thanks for highlighting this one. I've never seen a lighthouse like that, and I love it. What fun it would be to live in one with the light on top - no going out in bad weather!


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