For sale: Waterfront property; cozy, great views, plenty of light, needs TLC
Bidding stands at $13,000 for the Kenosha North Pierhead Light in Wisconsin.
July 12th, 2011
11:28 AM ET

For sale: Waterfront property; cozy, great views, plenty of light, needs TLC

If you have always wanted the tallest house in your neighborhood, here's your chance.

The federal government is auctioning off three decommissioned lighthouses, and the bids are still pretty low.

As of Tuesday morning, the Kenosha North Pierhead Light in Wisconsin is sitting at $13,000. In Ohio, three bids for the Fairport Harbor West Breakwater Light have risen to $39,500. The bidding ends Wednesday for both.

You have another week to bid on Ohio's Conneaut Harbor West Breakwater Light, which has drawn but one bid for $5,000, possibly because it could not easily be converted into a home or bed and breakfast.

"They're in varying states of repair or disrepair," General Services Administration official John E.B. Smith told The Washington Post. "They're not cheap to maintain."

Also available, but not to individual buyers, are 12 other lighthouses. The General Services Administration is trying to give them away to local governments or qualified agencies to be preserved as historic or educational sites. They are:

  • San Pedro's Point Fermin Light, California;
  • Fowey Rocks Light, Florida;
  • Ile aux Galetts Light, Michigan;
  • Port Austin Reef Light, Michigan;
  • Alpena Light, Michigan;
  • Brandywine Shoal Light, New Jersey;
  • Ship John Shoal Light, New Jersey;
  • Miah Maull Shoal Light, New Jersey;
  • Race Rock Light, New York;
  • Orient Point Light, New York;
  • Point Tuna (Punta Tuna) Light, Puerto Rico;
  • Milwaukee Breakwater Lighthouse, Wisconsin.

The lighthouses are outmoded by more modern means of navigation but still have historical value. The U.S. Coast Guard and National Park Service are offering them under the National Historic Lighthouse Preservation Act of 2000.

Interested organizations need to submit a letter and complete a stringent application process. If no suitable steward is identified, the lighthouses will be auctioned to the general public, the GSA says.

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Filed under: Architecture • Auctions
soundoff (55 Responses)
  1. Gaadffly

    No covered parking so I'm not interested.

    July 12, 2011 at 1:56 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Queen


    I agree.
    Although the view must be spectacular!
    I've only been in a few lighthouses; they are cool and kind of sp**ky all at the same time.

    And no, the filters won't let you say sp**ky.

    July 12, 2011 at 2:02 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Queen

    Well, you're certainly opinionated
    And that's fine.
    I, however, don't think that not wanting government interference after one has purchased a building the government no longer wants is akin to cancer.
    If you don't want to listen to uniformed opinions, try *informing* them.

    July 12, 2011 at 2:07 pm | Report abuse |
  4. What?????

    What? They don't have a bridge to sell me?

    July 12, 2011 at 2:08 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Bill

    I would LOVE to have a lighthouse. Seriously.

    July 12, 2011 at 2:10 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Lila

    I can afford to maintain one but all the ones I like aren't for individuals. Too bad there isn't an area for an individual to live while up keeping and showing the museums.

    July 12, 2011 at 2:17 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Starman

    Do they deliver?

    July 12, 2011 at 2:25 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Richie


    Please buy this and put it on your shoreline since preserving the perception of our principle, so this government of slobs can project power over the world, now requires the most distinguishing use of lethal force.

    July 12, 2011 at 2:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • just sayin

      I agree Riche, I think that our Armed Forces should use a less effective method of lethal force, afterall they all volunteered so it's only fair to make warfare more equal for each side. Maybe we could start providing weapons to the opposing force - I know they get some through theift but that's so chancy and unreliable...

      Or perhaps maybe you should run for an elected office so that you could change our country that is run, how did you put it, by a government of slobs. Try joining the military to see exactly what you're running your mouth about - disgusting display of lethal force? This isn't a tennis match. We may have a volunteer military but that doesn't mean they volunteered to fight these wars. Why would you ever want anything but an overwhelming military response?

      Our country certainly has its challenges and our political leadership often gets blinded by pettiness while trying to govern this country. If you think we are so immoral then leave - what country is it that gives you more opportunity to succeed or fail than the USA? What country works harder at diversity than the USA? What country spends more on foreign aid than the USA? Lazy? we work harder and longer and take less vacation than any other industrialized nation. Certainly we can improve in every area every facet of what we do but I get so tired of listening and reading about what a lousy nation we are. Take some pride in being an American and if you don't like what's going on then work to change it.

      July 12, 2011 at 4:07 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Lighthouses....

    ....are a great way to spy on people.

    July 12, 2011 at 2:50 pm | Report abuse |
  10. kenb

    Can I see the basement?

    July 12, 2011 at 3:00 pm | Report abuse |
  11. arizonan44

    does it use little curly light bulbs if not it is illegal and I don't want it

    July 12, 2011 at 3:01 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Dee

    I really hope someone buys them so they aren't torn down. Lighthouses are awesome! Unfortunately, I can't afford one. Would be kind of a great place to retire, though...

    July 12, 2011 at 3:07 pm | Report abuse |
  13. fernace

    I don't think you're allowed to continue the lighthouse process if you buy it, unless the gov't says so. In reality you own a defunct nautical guide that you should be able to make into what you want. Bed-Breakfast, cool home, nite club, whatever! I have no $$ to invest but it sounds cool!!

    July 12, 2011 at 3:09 pm | Report abuse |
  14. drinkin' from cups

    lighthouses rule

    July 12, 2011 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
  15. dutspup

    freakin links dont even work

    July 12, 2011 at 3:41 pm | Report abuse |
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