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Seguin Island Lighthouse

Seguin Island light

Georgetown, Maine
Built in 1796


On Seguin Island, about 2.5 miles from the mouth of the Kennebec River. Grounds and museum are open to the public, and lighthouse tours are provided during the summer months.

Latitude: 43° 42' 30" N
Longitude: 69° 45' 30" W


Historic Stories:

Seguin Island lighthouse is Maine’s second oldest lighthouse. George Washington gave the order to build the first tower made of wood in 1795, which lasted for about 25 years.

On top of the highest point on the island, at 186 feet above sea level, it is also the highest lighthouse in the state.

In 1857, the tower was rebuilt and because of the heavy shipping in the area, a first-order Fresnel lens, the most powerful light, was installed in the lantern.

Sequin Island lighthouse early construction

Early Construction
Courtesy US Coast Guard

It also had one of the largest foghorns to accommodate the nearly one-third of foggy days each year at the island.

The first Keeper was Count John Polersky, born of European nobility, who received the appointment as a reward for military service in the Revolutionary War. Almost as sooon as he arrived he complained about his salary, and the fact there was no food on the island and he would have to bring over two cows at his own expense to support his family. His requests for a salary increase were refused.

Sequin Island light in overcast weather He also constantly had to struggle with storms that destroyed his keeper's quarters, gardens, and boats, which needed constant rebuilding and repairs.

Five years later, even though he took great pride in his duties in keeping the light shining, the keeper died penniless on the island from failing health due to his constant strife with dampness and stormy weather. Most of the time his family stayed on the mainland with friends and relatives.

In the early 1900’s, Keeper Herbert Spinney created a “museum” at Seguin of mounted birds, butterflies, and minerals filling most of the wall space at the site. As this brought many tourists to the lighthouse, he began charging a dime admission fee to keep the crowds more manageable.

Because of the steep quarter-mile climb up to the lighthouse, a tramway system was installed leading from the boathouse to the keeper's house. Seguin Island tramway

After a near tragic accident occurred on the tramway involving the keeper’s wife and baby in the mid-1900’s, passengers were not allowed on the tramway.

In the years 1999-2000, the lighthouse was the subject of debate between preservationists and the Coast Guard, which wanted to extinguish the light and put up a solar-powered skeletal tower. In March 2000, under pressure from Congress and the public, the Coast Guard dropped its plans to deactivate the light.

seguin island light with original lens The first order lens is still at the lighthouse and was restored in 2007.

This makes the beacon as the only lighthouse in Maine with a first order lens still at the site.

Caretakers who are chosen to tend the light, can receive tourists during the summer season while occupying the keeper’s house.


Hantings at Seguin Island

Seguin Island also has a few ghost stories. One concerns a nineteenth century keeper who bought his wife a piano to keep her occupied. However, there was only one piece of sheet music that came with the piano, which his wife kept playing the same tune over and over. This eventually drove the keeper insane, causing him to destroy the piano with an axe, then killing his wife and himself.

Legend has it that the piano tune can still be heard drifting from the island on calm nights. haunted Seguin Island lighthouse

There have also been sightings of a young girl running in the house believed to be the daughter of one of the keepers who had died at the lighthouse.

There has been an account of furniture being moved from the beacon and mysteriously the cable was cut, smashing all the contents on the rocks, preempted by a visit by the "Old Captain," whom many beleive was Count John Polersky. Even recently, responsible caretakers who take over the duties in the lighthouse during the summer months have reported paranormal activities, especially if changes were being made in rearranging furniture etc.

Click the "Most Haunted Lighthouse" Blog link at the top of this page for more details of these hauntings in my Lighthouse Stories section.

seguin island lighthouse on hilltop



Places to Visit Nearby:

Bath is Maine’s largest ship building city and was one of the Maine’s premiere shipping ports. Bath promotes its historic year-round waterfront downtown set along the banks of the Kennebec River amid 19th century buildings, artist galleries, and specialty shops.

The Maine Maritime Museum offers lighthouses tours around the Kennebec River region and preserves many of Maine’s maritime artifacts and archives since 1607. They have a first of its kind exhibition of being in the lantern room as a full scale replica of Cape Elizabeth light with a second order lens. The room will have a time-lapsed video projection displaying a panorama of the Gulf of Maine that changes with the weather and seasons.

Seguin Island is open to private boaters, and there are cruises available from Bath, Freeport, Popham Beach, and Boothbay Harbor.

Fort Popham Fort Popham State Historic Site is part of Popham Beach within the state park.
At Popham State Park, with it's long curvy clean beach, during low tide visitors can hike up one of the hills from the sea and get a closer view of Seguin Island Light and nearby Pond Island Light.

The Fish ‘N Trips boat provides ferry service daily during the summer season to Seguin Island.

Wear appropriate clothing as you'll probably have to jump out of the boat in knee high waters and surf.

The island is very hilly with lots of room for hiking and exploring. Spend the day! Seguin Island lighthouse on the hill

There are plenty of areas to hike on this small island and enjoy some great views.

inside Seguin Island light museum Visitors can also take tours inside the keepers quarters which is now a museum.

The Virginia was the first English ship built in North America over 400 years ago. An exact replica is being built at Popham. Educational programs on New England’s maritime history are open there as well.


Contact Info:
Friends of Seguin Island

72 Front Street, Suite 3
Bath, Maine, 04530
(207) 443-4808

Seguin light tower


Local Boat Tours

Boat cruises and ferries mentioned below offer many types of cruises. While some may offer specific lighthouse cruises, others may pass by Sequin Island Lighthouse as part of charters, narrated wildlife and historic tours, ferrying passengers, fishing tours, and other types of excursions.

Fish ‘N Trips
Provides ferry service to and from Seguin Island on specific days during the summer, charters fishing trips, and lobster boat tours.
P.O. Box 150
Phippsburg, ME 04562


Maine Maritime Museum
Frequent lighthouse tours along the Kennebec River, along with lots of historical maritime workshops and exhibits. Check out the incredible "Into the Lantern" room where you can feel what it is like to be looking out at the sea from a lighthouse keeper's view.
243 Washington Street
Bath, ME 04530
Phone: (207) 443-1316
Fax: (207) 443-1665


Cap'n Fish's Whale Watch and Scenic Nature Cruises
Includes lighthouses along the Kennebec River and Boothbay Harbor.
Boothbay Harbor, Maine
Or toll free 1-800-636-3244


River Run Tours
Chartered pontoon boat for lighthouse excursions. Enjoy a relaxed schedule and really get a chance to view the lighthouses and wildlife.
River Run Tours, Inc.
28 Walnut Point
Woolwich, Maine 04578
(207) 504-BOAT(2628)


Maine Experience Guide Service
For those who prefer private chartered tours, join Captain Jay Farris as he provides personal lighthouse tours to nine lighthouses (including an eleven lighthouse tour)in the Boothbay and Kennebec River regions, including Seguin Island Light. You can view these beacons by boat, or hike to some. As part of these tours you'll learn about and may be able to view seals, porpoises, occasional whales, many marine birds, bald eagles, working lobstermen, post card fishing villages, an old War of 1812 fort, 3 historic rivers, vast beaches, and some coastal islands.

Contact: Captain Jay Farris
23 Commercial St.
Bath ME 04530
Phone: (207) 215-3828


Books to Explore

My 300-page book (with over 360 images), Lighthouses and Coastal Attractions of Northern New England: New Hampshire, Maine, and Vermont, provides human interest stories from each of the 76 lighthouses, along with plenty of coastal attractions and tours near each beacon.

In the special section showcasing haunted lighthouses, you'll find more detailed stories surrounding Seguin Island lighthouse.

Look inside!

book northern New England lighthouses and local coastal attractions




book of the rise and demise of the largest sailing ships

To order a signed paperback copy:

Available from bookstores in paperback, hardcover, and as an eBook for all devices.

my ebook on apple books

The Rise and Demise of the Largest Sailing Ships:
Stories of the Six and Seven-Masted Coal Schooners of New England

In the early 1900s, New England shipbuilders constructed the world’s largest sailing ships amid social and political reforms. These giants of sail were the ten original six-masted coal schooners and one colossal seven-masted vessel, built to carry massive quantities of coal and building supplies, and measured longer than a football field!

This book, balanced with plenty of color and vintage images, showcases the historical accounts that followed these mighty ships. These true stories include competitions, accidents, battling destructive storms, acts of heroism, and their final voyages.



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