Harkening back to when ships could often be lost on Lake Michigan, one single lighthouse still provides safe passage and the guiding light in the fog and rain. Built in 1895, the Seul Choix Pointe Lighthouse stands strong after nearly 120 years, but it’s not as isolated as one might think, especially with a crew from beyond the grave guarding the important light in the darkness. Today we explore the Seul Choix Pointe Lighthouse and the ghosts that call it home on the rocky shores of Lake Michigan. The name of the lighthouse, Seul Choix, means “Last Choice,” harkening back to the days of ships in the night looking for a safe harbor to pull into in the storm.
The hauntings at the lighthouse began relatively soon after it was opened. A lightkeeper from the 1900s is said to be one of the spirits stuck in the fog at the lighthouse. More than just a lighthouse on a peninsula, it also includes more buildings such as a stable, the keeper’s living quarters, and a boiler and fog horn building. The lighthouse itself stands 75 feet up from the rocky shore.
In 1910, Captain Joseph Willie Townshend passed away at the Seul Choix at the age of 63. The cause of death is unknown, but cancer or consumption are believed to have been a contributing factor. The strong scent of cigar smoke can still be found in the lighthouse, over a hundred years later. The good captain was said to be an avid cigar smoker, so the ethereal smell in the building seems to be the spirit of this former head lightkeeper, keeping his habit up in the afterlife. Even more frightening, the captain has been seen no less than 13 times in the mirrors around the keeper house. Occasionally, when setting the table, a volunteer will come back to have found the order of the silverware switched with no obvious hands to have changed the settings. Captain Townshend is seen all over the grounds as a full bodied apparition, some seeing him walking from his former quarters to the base of the lighthouse.
The lighthouse has a dark reputation, considered one of the scariest haunted places in Michigan, maybe even scarier than the great lakes themselves. Another spirit, the ghost known as Amanda, has been seen dozens of times looking out the window on a top floor. More reports say they can hear phonograph music playing while walking the buildings and grounds, with no obvious source of the music. Toys have been found strewn across the children’s room upstairs, when they’re usually kept in trunks and on shelves. Tables are reported to be moved on their own, or the chairs moved and placed on top of the table occasionally. One ghost, whether it be captain Townshend or another spirit, really doesn’t care for dinner etiquette.
Today, you can still walk up the winding stairs to the top of the lighthouse- now automated with no need for a lightkeeper. You can visit the gift shop and tour the quarters thanks to the hard work of the Gulliver Historical Society, who manage and care for the grounds. The lighthouse still stands tall over the bay, keeping ships save in the night from unfortunate rocky accidents on the rocks below.
- About the Author
- Latest Posts
Born in Death Valley and raised on the prairie, Deborah is a Wyoming-based paranormal researcher and a senior at the University of Wyoming, studying Communication. Her interests lie in folklore, history, rhetorical analysis and research. With an obvious love for ghost stories, frequently those interests combine with her work on Ghostlandia.