THE LIGHTHOUSE MUSEUM

September 11, 2019 at 5:15 am

We take a short ferry ride from the tip of Manhattan to the north shore of Staten Island to visit the National Lighthouse Museum.

Aired on September 10, 2019. 

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>> THERE'S A NEW MUSEUM IN TOWN
WITH AN OLD FAMILIAR FEEL.
THE NEW DESTINATION AT THE END
OF THE STATEN ISLAND FERRY.
THE NEW OLD HOME OF THE NATIONAL
LIGHTHOUSE MUSEUM.
WNET PRESIDENT DR. BILL BAKER
TAKES US ON A TOUR AND EXPLORES
OUR MARITIME HERITAGE.
>> THIS IS THE HEART OF THE
HARBOR.
RIGHT IN THE CENTER OF THINGS,
YOU HAVE TO IMAGINE A SHIP
COMING ACROSS THE FLICK TLIK AND
THEN CRASHING ON ONE OF THE
REEFS OUT IN THE HARBOR.
LIGHTHOUSES HAVEN'T BEEN BUILT
AND THE ENTIRE COUNTRY AND THE
ENTIRE WORLD.
THAT'S THE REASON WHY
LIGHTHOUSES ARE ARE SO
IMPORTANT.
YOU HAVE OVER 600 IN THE COUNTRY
AND 15,000 IN THE WORLD.
PEOPLE WANT THAT HISTORY, WE
WANT TO SAVE THAT HISTORY.
MANY OF THEM ARE BEING
REPURPOSED.
AND THE MUSEUM HERE IS PUT
TOGETHER TO PRESERVE AND EDUCATE
FOR FUTURE GENERATIONS.
>> THIS WAS THE HOME OF THE U.S.
LIGHTHOUSE DEPOT.
FROM 1864 TO 1939.
>> WHAT THE DEPOT WAS WAS
ANYTHING FROM A LIGHTHOUSE
KEEPER IN AMERICA NEEDED.
WAS ESSENTIALLY MADE HERE
ONSIGHT.
BROUGHT HERE TO BE INSPECTED
THEN SHIPPED OUT NATIONWIDE.
SO WE'RE NOT TALKING ABOUT A
REGIONAL DEPOT, EVEN THOUGH IT
DID FUNCTION THAT WAY.
WE'RE TALKING ABOUT NATIONAL
DEPOT THAT SERVICED AND
DELIVERED SUPPLIES NATIONALLY TO
ALL LIGHTHOUSES MANY AMERICA.
>> ADMINISTRATORS WORKED HERE.
THE KEEP ERS WERE FILLED AND TH
ARCHITECTS WERE DESIGNING LIGHTS
HERE RIGHT IN THE ADMINISTRATION
BUILDING.
THE LENSES CAME IN FROM FRANCE
AND ENGLAND WERE BROUGHT HERE TO
THE SITE.
ASSEMBLED THEN DISASSEMBLED AND
SENT THROUGHOUT THE COUNTRY.
THIS WAS A WAREHOUSE FOR ALL THE
LENSES COMING INTO THE COUNTRY
ALSO.
>> THE ONE INTERESTING WORKER
HERE THAT WE KNOW WHO SORT OF
LIVED ON STATEN ISLAND AND
WORKED HERE WAS JUSTICE.
HE WAS IMPORTANT BECAUSE HE
PATENTED A LOT OF THE OIL LAMPS
THAT WENT INSIDE THE LENSES.
INTRODUCING NEW OIL AND IT WAS
HIS JOB TO MAKE IT WORK SO HE
WAS A PROLIFIC PATENTOR.
>> WE CREATED EDUCATION HERE
GIVE YOU A GOOD UNDERSTANDING OF
WHAT LIGHTHOUSES AND THE HISTORY
OF LIGHTHOUSES ARE.
BUT YOU ALSO FIND A TIMELINE OF
LIGHTHOUSES.
YOU'LL FIND HISTORY OF THE
PURPOSE.
AND ALSO HISTORY ABOUT THE SIGHT
THAT FWINS BACK TO INDIAN
FORWARD.
YOU ALWAYS FIND THE HISTORY OF
WHAT HAPPENED ON THE SITE OF THE
DURING THE U.S. LIGHTHOUSE
SERVICE GENERAL DEPOT.
STORIES ABOUT THE KEEPERS.
>> NOW I AM LIGHTHOUSE NUT.
SO MUCH OF A A NUT THAT I
MAINTAIN AND CARE FOR THIS
LIGHTHOUSE.
THE HENRY ISLAND LIGHTHOUSE IN
NOVA SCOTIA.
BUT I'M NOTHING COMPARED TO WILL
FRED.
A MAN WHO HAS TRAVELED THE WORLD
LOOKING AT LIGHTHOUSES.
HE'S BEEN TO 2500 OF THEM.
I WONDER WHY.
>> WHEN I WAS 14 OR 15, I
DELIVERED CAMERA AND I WAS IN
THE CAMP MEETING IN GERMANY AND
I SAW MAKE THE FIRST PHOTO OF
THE LIGHT SHIP.
LIGHT SHIP WAS LIGHT SHIP HERE.
LATER WAS A CLEAR SHIP.
NOW I HAVE SEEN MORE THAN 250
WORLDWIDE.
USA, CLOSE TO 700.
CANADA, CLOSE TO 550 AND
AUSTRALIA, SOUTH AFTERCAR
ACCIDENT BUT I WANT TO GO TO
ASIA AND GO TO SCANDINAVIA.
AND I'M ALL THE WORKING WITH THE
STORY ABOUT LIGHTHOUSES IN MY
LIFE.
BUT IT TAKES YEARS.
BECAUSE I'M OFTEN NOT AT HOME.
>> WE ARE NOW ALREADY BRINGING,
MANY PEOPLE COMING FROM ALL OVER
THE WORLD AND WE HAVE A
WONDERFUL MAP SHOWING WHERE
PEOPLE ARE COMING FROM SO WE ASK
THEM TO PUT A PIN IN.
YOU'LL BE AMAZED AT WHO'S COMING
AND WE'RE JUST GETTING STARTED.
WE DO LIGHTHOUSE BOAT TOURS AND
LECTURES.
WE ARE NOW ABLE TO BRING IN
CHILDREN.
TO VISIT THE MUSEUM WHICH WE'RE
EXCITED ABOUT.
AND WE'RE GROWING.
WE'RE OPEN EVERY DAY EXCEPT
MONDAY.
FROM 11:00 TO 5:00 AND SUMMER
AND THE WINTER, 11:00 TO 4:00.
PEOPLE ARE COMING ALREADY AND A
THEY'RE VERY EXCITED THEY FOUND
THIS HISTORY AND APPRECIATE IT.
>> FOR METROFOCUS, I'M BILL

Mutual of America PSEG

Funders

MetroFocus is made possible by James and Merryl Tisch, Sue and Edgar Wachenheim III, the Sylvia A. and Simon B. Poyta Programming Endowment to Fight Anti-Semitism, Bernard and Irene Schwartz, Rosalind P. Walter, Barbara Hope Zuckerberg, Jody and John Arnhold, the Cheryl and Philip Milstein Family, Janet Prindle Seidler, Judy and Josh Weston and the Dr. Robert C. and Tina Sohn Foundation.

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