Port Burwell
By Dave Wobser

A rare octagonal wooden light tower that has survived for over 165 years, and is one of Canada's oldest wooden lights. The 65-foot tall  light was built from local hardwood timber.

Port Burwell was settled first in 1803 by Col. Thomas Talbot, who built a road from Windsor to attract settlers. In 1830 the town site was surveyed, and by 1836 a church was built as the population increased.

The lumbering industry used the Otter Creek as a method to get logs to Lake Erie, turning Port Burwell into an important port. The lighthouse was built in 1840. In the 1860's and 1870's Port Burwell was the center of a thriving shipbuilding industry.

The extension of the railroad from Tillsonburg generated coal handling facilities at Port Burwell and a cross-lake ferry service ran for a number of years.

The light was completely restored in 1986. An information booth is located on the ground floor of the tower, and the tower is open to climb for a small fee.

A maritime museum is located next door, and has the original lens from the tower, and many other local maritime artifacts.

Click on image to enlarge

Photograph by John Remy

Photos by Dave Wobser

2011 view from water - Dave Wobser

Location: Port Burwell, Ontario. East mouth of Otter Creek.
Date Built: 1840
Active: No

Open to
public:

Yes. Adjacent Maritime Museum.

 

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