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Cobbossee (Ladies Delight) Lighthouse

ladies delight lighthouse

Winthrop, Maine
Built in 1908

Location:

On a small rocky island called Ladies Delight in northern Lake Cobbosseecontee. It is not open to the pubic but can be viewed by boat. Ladies Delight also referred to as Cobbossee Light, is the only land locked lighthouse in Maine. Technically it is not in the Rockland and Camden Region of lighthouses, but can be easily accessed from Route 1 coastline from the Rockland area by taking Route 17 West or Route 32 West towards Augusta (see Directions below). It is the only inland lighthouse in Maine.

Latitude: 44° 18' 16"
Longitude: 69° 53' 48"

 

Historic Stories:

Lake Cobbosseecontee is one of the longest lakes in Maine at about nine miles in length and became a major tourist attraction around the Augusta region in the 19th century. The popularity of the lake brought steamboats to provide transportation to the various vacation inns and cottages, and the area also became a social mecca for numerous sailing regattas.

In amongst its beauty, the lake has its share of rocky ledges and reefs, which became a challenge as tourism increased. There was also a passenger launch that would transport visitors around the northern area of the lake and would occasionally run aground on Ladies Delight Island and nearby islands in foggy or stormy weather before the lighthouse was constructed. The Lake Cobbosseecontee Yacht Club was established in 1904 as a result of this scenic region, and was directly involved in the construction of the Ladies Delight lighthouse in 1908 out of the necessity in helping mariners navigate around the island and surrounding areas. Note: Two other lighthouses, the Belle Island Light, and the Crow Island Light were also constructed during this period and are no longer around today.

In constructing the Ladies Delight Lighthouse, two oxen were to be used, but only one could be brought over at a time because of the size of the barge the workmen were using. As the crew dropped off one ox on the tiny island and attempt to retrieve the other on the mainland, they found the first ox, who probably was bored and lonely for his buddy, attempting to swim back to the mainland. They finally were able to keep both oxen on the island and completed construction of the lighthouse over the summer of 1908.

In the early days, the lighthouse was maintained by a volunteer keeper from the Cobbosseecontee Yacht Club. The lighthouse was always, and is still maintained by the Cobbosseecontee Yacht Club. They were directly involved in major renovations to the lighthouse completed in 2005, in time for the lighthouse's celebrated 100th birthday in 2008. Ladies Delight Lighthouse is still the only land locked lighthouse in Maine.

construction of ladies delight light
Photo of 2005 renovations courtesy
Cobbosseecontee Yacht Club

 

New England Lighthouses

 

Places to Visit Nearby:

Lake Cobbosseecontee lies just south of Augusta Maine and is the largest lake in central Maine. Ladies Delight Lighthouse is about a mile in the lake and is best viewed by boat. The Cobbosseecontee Yacht Club, which maintains the lighthouse, and involved with preserving the lake, may provide cruises out to the lighthouse by appointment during the summer months. They are very accommodating and friendly, and are one of the oldest inland waters yacht clubs in America. They also sponsor an annual lighthouse regatta, "boat-ins", concerts, and many other events to educate, and raise funds for preservation efforts not only for the lighthouse but for the for the lake itself. Membership is very reasonable and you don't have to be a resident either!

If you stay at the Lakeside Motel and Cabins, you can rent a boat or kayak to get out to the lighthouse. They are also very accommodating.

The lake has some of the best fishing and sporting events you'll find anywhere. Many of the state's largest bass have come from this lake. If you are a boater, there is annual concert of all kinds of music on Horseshoe Cove where hundreds of boats (maybe thousands?) park and have a great day of fun.

If you enjoy outdoor museums, visit the Monmouth Museum which houses 8 buildings and exhibits from Maine's 19th century, or in Augusta, explore the Old Fort Western Museum, the oldest fort in New England built in the mid-1700s. Enjoy a local show at the Theater at Monmouth.

In nearby Augusta, Maine's capital city, you'll find plenty of museums, parks, night life, and other attractions. The Maine State Museum contains thousands of educational collections of items from Maine's history, pre-history, and environment, while the Children's Discovery Museum provides plenty of educational interactive exhibits and events. If you enjoy some architectural splendor, explore the Blaine House, the Governor's mansion is open to the public. The Viles Arboretum (also known as the Pine Tree State Arboretum) provides plenty of walking trails to appreciate the many varieties of Maine's trees, and flora.

 

Directions:

Contact Info:

Cobbosseecontee Yacht Club
P.O. Box 17
Manchester, ME 04351
E-Mail: commodore@cycmaine.org

Local Lighthouse Tour on Lake Cobbosseecontee

Cobbosseecontee Yacht Club
Provides lighthouse tours sometimes on request. Sponsors a lighthouse regatta and other events that promote preservation and education of Lake Cobbosseecontee.
Winthrop, ME 04364
Phone: (207) 623-1123
E-Mail: commodore@cycmaine.org

 

 

 

My 300-page book (with over 360 images), Lighthouses and Coastal Attractions of Northern New England: New Hampshire, Maine, and Vermont, published by Schiffer Publishing, provides human interest stories from each of the 76 lighthouses, along with plenty of coastal attractions and tours near each beacon, and helpful contact info to plan your special vacation.

Look inside!

book northern New England lighthouses and attractions

 

 

 

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