Chicago Harbor Lighthouse . Chicago . Illinois . Lake Michigan . Watercolor . 9" x 12"
... a lighthouse was first constructed in 1831, at the mouth of the Chicago River on the Great Lake Michigan to mark the location of a treacherous sandbar... and... that 50-foot tower promptly collapsed before it even entered service. A second tower, at 40-feet, was built the following year. In the early 1850's, piers were constructed to enhance entry into the Chicago River and in 1859, an iron, skeleton light, tower was sited on the point of the north pier. A long breakwater was added to the harbor and completed in 1877, with 2 more, smaller lights on point. Several more lights were added as the harbor grew; breakwaters multiplied and were extended. The current, masonry, Chicago Harbor Light was constructed in 1893 for the World's Columbian Exposition and relocated to its present location in 1919. The tower stands at 66-feet with a pair of attached service buildings.