Digest>Archives> December 2010

Wickie’s Wisdom

Saving Yesterday for Tomorrow - Can It Be Sustained?

By Timothy Harrison


As another year comes to a close I can’t help but remember those in the lighthouse community that we lost during the past twelve months and before.

Although the lighthouse preservation movement in this country is relatively young, many, if not most, of the people, just like the lighthouse keepers of yesteryear, who did the early work, especially in research, which paved the way for the rest of us are no longer with us.

Many of these people, such as the late F. Ross Holland and Jim Gibbs, and others did this without the availability of the high speed Internet or e-mail. However, there is still so much more of lighthouse history that needs to be rediscovered and written about as well as many old photographs that need to be located and published, before they are lost forever. Additionally, we are also at a crossroads where many of the children and grandchildren of keepers of the United States Lighthouse Service will also soon no longer be with us and it is vital to record as much as they know before it is too late.

We already have many stories and probably hundreds of old photographs that have never been published and rediscovered material arrives here every day, while research remains an ongoing project.

However, we at Lighthouse Digest have also reached a crossroad. With dwindling advertising revenue, something that is being experienced nationwide, especially at what is called niche magazines (such as ours), along with the increased cost in printing, paper and postage, we find it increasingly difficult to sustain a monthly publication.

One solution that we are considering is changing from a monthly magazine to a bimonthly magazine. Currently we print 40 pages per month, (except February) which could be changed to 80 pages every other month. This would result in a substantial savings in the cost of postage and still keep the magazine content at the same number of pages that subscribers now receive without increasing the cost of a subscription.

But before we do that, we want to hear from our loyal subscribers. We want to know what you would think of such a change. Naturally, we would also welcome any other ideas or suggestions.

We believe that it is vital to continue to save yesterday’s history for the next generation as well as reporting on today’s events, which will become tomorrow’s history. We also believe it is vital to continue the legacy of those who came before us and the more that we can draw attention to lighthouses, the more that people will become involved in the various lighthouse groups. Additionally, we are the only ones researching many of the lost and forgotten lighthouses and then publishing the stories and photos associated with them. If we don’t do it, who will?

Over the years, we’ve had great support from you, our readers, who have made possible what we have done and for that we sincerely thank you. We value our relationship and I look forward to hearing from you with your thoughts and suggestions.

In the mean time, from our homes to yours, we wish you a very blessed and Merry Christmas with best wishes for the New Year.

Happy Holidays,

Timothy Harrison

Editor & Publisher

Lighthouse Digest

P.O. Box 250

East Machias, ME 04630


This story appeared in the December 2010 edition of Lighthouse Digest Magazine. The print edition contains more stories than our internet edition, and each story generally contains more photographs - often many more - in the print edition. For subscription information about the print edition, click here.

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