She’s watched sailboat regattas, teenage pranksters, a wedding… and even a jersey cow on her balcony during her storied career as the venerable light of Mobile Bay. And you’re not a local unless you have some version of Middle Bay Lighthouse on a watercolor, coasters, or other family knick-knack.
Modeled on a classic design of the Maryland coast, Middle Bay Lighthouse has changed little since its construction in 1885 on steel pilings with a fixed white light that flashed red every 30 seconds.
By World War I, the 1 ½ story hexagon cottage had a keeper and a family with a brand new baby needing milk. Rather than send them ashore, a jersey cow was hauled out and a corral added to the gallery. Other provisions came by boat once a week from a local grocer.
Automatic lighting left the structure vacant in 1935, then deactivated entirely in 1967. In 2010 a major $270,000 restoration ensured she’ll remain sturdy in the center of the bay for years to come.
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