View single post by cklarson
 Posted: Sat Sep 12th, 2009 07:13 am
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Joined: Sun Sep 23rd, 2007
Posts: 111

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Thanks very much for this. My father has spent a fair amount of time in Key West as his wife's sister lived there and he has told me he thought I'd like it very much. This now encourages me more to visit.

I'm in the Coast Guard Auxiliary and so do CG and women's military history. The histories of the lighthouse keepers and the Life Saving Service is wonderful as are all their houses and stations. What's also good about the services is they were probably the first federal agencies that early on employed minorities and women: women, blacks, Native Americans, Pacific Islanders and heroes at that. In 1869, Ida Lewis of Lime Rock L/h in Rhode Island was the most famous keeper in the country, with lots of life saves to her credit. Overall, there were about 120 full women keepers and 240 women asst. keepers, usually to their husbands. The Pea Island Life Saving Service was all manned and commanded by blacks in the 1890s. The most decorated life saver was a Native American from WA State as I remember. In 2002 the CG launched its new keeper class of buoy tenders, the first 3 named after women, Lewis being the first. I think I got at least one named after Katherine Walker of Robin's Reef Light off Staten Island as I submitted a lot of documentation on her. The USCG has a good history site at -- go to "people" I think then history, then lighthouses. etc.


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