Saturday, August 31, 2013

The Plains Lighthouse - A Beacon of Hope in Western Nebraska

Lake Minatare Lighthouse

Western Nebraska is known for its corn, cattle and lighthouses. Well, at least one lighthouse. The Plains Lighthouse is situated on Lake Minatare's Lakeview Point Peninsula. The 4-story structure was built towards the end of the Great Depression by the Veterans Conservation Corps, a new deal agency that provided jobs to unemployed veterans.

For people in the area, the unique landmark became a beacon of hope during darker times. The 55-foot tower rises above the rolling prairie and offers spectacular, panoramic views of the lake and scenic river valley. The lighthouse is mostly about form and not functional. There is no actual light so it doesn't provide navigational aide to boats out on the water.

It's built entirely from native stone and the maritime design, complete with spiral staircase, is a faithful reproduction of our nation's coastal guards. The Cornhusker version is a combination shelter house and observation tower only. Nevertheless, the Lake Minatare Lighthouse is a precious piece of local history. It's an iconic symbol for the pioneer spirit that came to light in the panhandle and still shines across the entire state of Nebraska.

Lake Minatare is in Western Nebraska

The lighthouse was built during the Great Depression

It's a unique landmark

Situated on the Lakeview Point Peninsula

The lighthouse was built from native stone

A beacon of hope

Lake Minatare is a state recreation area

It's a shelter house and observation tower

The lake is a wildlife refuge

A pioneer spirit shines across the whole state

4 comments:

  1. What an interesting post - I love lighthouses - would have never figured one was in Nebraska though!! - great photos as always!

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    1. It looks out of place in the middle of a cattle pasture but it means a lot to the people of the area. They're proud of their lighthouse. I have a feeling lighthouses are more common out there in Rhode Island. I liked the article about the sunset cruise. Sounds like fun. Good pictures too.

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  2. Imagine that! Definitely not what one would expect in Nebraska.

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    1. See, we have more than just cows and corn here. Even in landlocked Nebraska we have a lighthouse. Not quite the tropical paradise you live in though.

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