U.S. Lighthouse Society Library


Mariners’ Museum Chosen As Steward of U.S. Lighthouse Society Library Collection

HANSVILLE, WA. – Earlier this year, The Mariners’ Museum and Park was officially chosen as the new caretaker of The United States Lighthouse Society Wayne Wheeler Library (USLHS) collection. The Museum is honored to accept this incredible collection of books, journals, and lighthouse reports.

The United States Lighthouse Society conducted a national search to find a proper home for the impressive library. USLHS was looking for an institution to house its materials because its current facility ran out of storage space. USLHS reached out to The Mariners’ Museum through the Council of American Maritime Museums (CAMM) to begin the conversation of the Mariners’ housing the collection.

“The U.S. Lighthouse Society is pleased to be partnering with The Mariners’ Museum so that its extensive research library dedicated to lighthouse history can be made more accessible to the public. We are very proud to be part of a renowned research library and are gratified that our valuable collection will be taken care of, to the highest preservation standards, by the museum’s professional library staff,” said Jeff Gales, Executive Director of the U.S. Lighthouse Society.

The USLHS collection was delivered to The Mariners’ Museum on November 12, 2018, and is a little less than 400 linear feet that holds 4,000 volumes. The materials include books, journals, postcards, and lighthouse reports. Most materials are related to United States lighthouses, but a segment includes international lighthouses. It is believed to be one of the largest lighthouse libraries in existence.

These materials enhance The Mariners’ Museum’s collection on lighthouses and provide better support to researchers.

“The Wayne Wheeler Library houses perhaps the most important lighthouse collection in the country. We feel at once humbled and proud to assist our colleagues at the U.S. Lighthouse Society with their stewardship of this world-class collection,” said Howard Hoege, the President and CEO of The Mariners’ Museum and Park.

The U.S. Lighthouse Society is a national nonprofit corporation that helped kick-start the lighthouse preservation movement in America more than 30 years ago. Education is at the forefront of its operations, and to that end it produces a highly respected lighthouse journal, operates educational excursions, extends capital grants to lighthouses annually and provides research and educational services (utilizing its extensive archive and website) to anyone looking to learn more about lighthouse history. The Society is the proud recipient of numerous preservation awards including a special commendation from The White House. Today, the U.S. Lighthouse Society is made up of dedicated members around the world all contributing to its mission in a variety of ways. The Society is committed to continuing to serve as an important voice for those who are passionate about lighthouse preservation, and is dedicated to making sure that these national maritime treasures survive for future generations. For more information about the United States Lighthouse Society, please visit uslhs.org. For research and collection questions, please email info@uslhs.org.

The Mariners’ Museum Library holds the largest maritime history collection in the Western Hemisphere. With its rich collections and international scope, the Library is a premier resource for maritime research. The Library collections consist of more than two million items including books, magazines, manuscripts, maps and charts, vessel plans, newspaper articles, rare books, photographs, Chris-Craft archives, and The Mariners’ Museum’s archives. Although current storage for the Library does not include public space, Library staff is able to complete patron research requests.

For more information about the Library, please visit MarinersMuseum.org/library. For research and collection questions, please email library@MarinersMuseum.org.

The Mariners' Museum and Park connects people to the world's waters because through the waters – through our shared maritime heritage - we are connected to one another. The organization is an educational, non-profit institution accredited by the American Alliance of Museums and preserves and interprets maritime history through an international collection of ship models, figureheads, paintings, and other maritime artifacts. The Mariners’ Museum is home to the USS Monitor Center, and is surrounded by the 550-acre Mariners’ Museum Park, one of the largest privately maintained parks open to the public in North America. The Mariners’ Museum Library is the largest maritime library in the Western hemisphere. Because of the Museum’s world-class collection and its reputation for high-level exhibits and programs, in 1999, the U.S. Congress designated The Mariners’ Museum as one of only two maritime museums that comprise America’s National Maritime Museum. For hours and information, visit MarinersMuseum.org, call (757) 596-2222 or write to The Mariners' Museum, 100 Museum Drive, Newport News, VA 23606.