On Thursday, January 25, the Preservation Society of Asheville and Buncombe County (PSABC) will host Preserving Lighthouses: Antiquity to the Modern Era, presented by lighthouse authority Wayne Wheeler. This two-part program will provide a brief overview of lighthouses and the efforts to preserve these historic structures over the last 30 years, followed by a question and answer session. “Lighthouses are one of the last symbols of our maritime heritage,” Wheeler says. “They were very important in helping ships navigate and showing them the way around dangerous shoals and into safe harbor.”
As a retired Coast Guard officer living in San Francisco, Wheeler agreed to do a presentation on lighthouses at a local yacht club that proved so popular that he found himself visiting yacht clubs all over the state to share his knowledge. Soon after, he founded the United States Lighthouse Society, which publishes a quarterly journal and bulletin, maintains an archive and a 5,000-volume research library and grants annual preservation funding for lighthouse and lightship projects. Wheeler has lectured throughout the country at science and maritime museums and appeared on Good Morning America and NPR’s All Things Considered. Now in its 33rd year, the Society has two lighthouse preservation projects under way and boasts a wide-reaching, international member group with representatives in every state.
All Souls Cathedral is located at 9 Swan Street in Asheville. Attendance is free but donations are accepted. Doors open at 5 p.m. and program starts at 5:30 pm. For more information, visit psabc.org.