Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Stories within the old lighthouse

Bolivar Point Lighthouse, Bolivar Point, Texas. © Copyright 2012 Caroline M. Pointer

One hundred twenty-five people sought refuge in the Bolivar Point Lighthouse during the Storm of 1900 that devastated Galveston Island, Texas, and the surrounding area including Bolivar Peninsula. And I cannot even imagine the horrors those lighthouse refugees and those like them on Galveston Island went through.

Luckily my 2nd great grandparents had already moved their family clear to the other side of Texas. [And there was a part 2 to that story as well.]

Anywho. The lighthouse was built in 1872 and has survived all of the storms that have hit this part of the Gulf Coast of where it still stands today.

And other than its color being changed from black and white striped to the solid black that it is today, it is the same lighthouse my great grandmother, Alice Florence Vaughan, would have seen on a daily basis as she grew up on Bolivar Point.

And it's the same lighthouse that stood there on the day Daniel and Annie boarded the ferry for Alice's baptism which would take place later on Galveston Island in St. Mary's Cathedral. And as they sailed across the bay, I wonder if either Daniel or Annie looked back at it? Surely they would have gazed at it on their way back home after Alice's baptism, for it would have been, as it is now, the tallest structure on Point Bolivar.

I wonder if, as she grew up, Alice ever stopped to look at the lighthouse. Did she ever ponder its stories it held inside? Did she marvel at its strength?

I know every time I gaze at the old lighthouse I ponder the stories located within its steel-covered brick walls.  I wonder if it could ~ or even if it would ~ share its stories with me.


Note: I'm in the process of getting all my records together in order to apply for membership into the Daughters of the American Revolution as well as the United Empire Loyalists. At the same time. With the same line. [Scandulous, I know.] And I've blogged about this quest previously. Also, when I ordered my great grandmother's baptismal record from the Catholic Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston Archives, the awesome archivist sent me my great grandmother's sibllings' records as well. [At least, the ones who had been baptized in the same diocese.] Therefore, I've been blogging about their records and the resulting stories: James CornelHenry Lewis, Genevieve Lennon, and Viola Prudence, and now, finally my Great Grandmother, Alice Florence (Vaughan) Truitt, but we just called her 'Boo', a shortened version of her nickname 'Bamboo' [And you know you wanna click on the link to read *that* story. =) ]

St. Mary's Cathedaral (Galveston, Galveston County, Texas). Baptismal Registers. Roman Catholic Church Archdiocese og Galveston-Houston, Texas.

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  1. There's just something fascinating about a lighthouse isn't there? And yes, what stories could it tell us? How many times did it and the lighthouse keeper help to guide mariners out in storms or fog?

    Great post and great video too!

  2. She was born exactly 63 years before I was...nice video!

  3. 150 people in the lighthouse, Caroline? They must have been sitting on the stairs. I have a "thing" about Scottish lighthouse keepers, and always copy the records for myself when I come across them. Not sure what I'll do with them, but there's probably a blog post brewing. The only time I visited the US, I had to go and see the lighthouse at Montauk Point. They have a great diary written by one of the lighthouse keeper's daughters - I could have stayed there all week reading it :-)

  4. Jana, Thanks. I love lighthouses. And they always make me think of stories. I dunno why, but they do. Thanks for stopping by and reading. =) ~C

    Randy, thanks! It gave me goosebumps to read her baptismal record. Very moving. And happy belated birthday! Thanks for reading. I really appreciate it. =)~C

    Imagespast, I can't even imagine 125 frantic people in that lighthouse ~ the crying, the screaming, the mumbling of prayers, the strong winds whipping around the lighthouse, and all the bumps and crashes into the lighthouse. Ah, the stories that old lighthouse could tell. Thanks for stopping by and reading! =) ~C


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