September 25, 2021
Completion of the Browns Point Lighthouse restoration project is in sight and a grand rededication community celebration is planned for Sunday, Oct. 17, 2-4 pm. (Above vintage photo, Lightkeeper Oscar Brown dedicates our new 1933 Lighthouse. Note the Stadium High School Marching Band!)
Sunday, October 17, 2-4 pm, Browns Point Lighthouse Park
TIME TO CELEBRATE!
Parking available in BPIC parking lot.
Sea Chanty Singers - Marching Band - Ribbon Cutting - Peek Inside the Lighthouse Fundraiser T-shirt distribution - Free treats and other free stuff- Photo ops - much more!
The neglected and deteriorating community eyesore is being transformed to look like the historic white gleaming icon which was the pride of the local community when it was originally dedication in 1933.
Left: Lightkeeper Oscar Brown stands proudly by the new light in 1933.
Right: The Browns Point Light in 2020 before its restoration process.
Planning started four years ago with fundraising efforts being launched in January and construction begin- ning in July. Thanks to several grants, over 200 individual donors, generous in-kind contributions, and vol- unteer labor, the project will be completed on time and under budget!
Among the most apparent changes will be the gleaming white exterior paint on the tower, the and restor- ing of an architectural ledge around the base platform which had been filled in years ago to accommodate an ugly chain link/ barbed wire fence. A replica faux fog horn matching the original has been installed.
The working foghorn was removed years ago by the Coast Guard.
A replica Faux foghorn was made and installed by our volunteers!
You have to make your own fog- horn noise!
Other missing or deteriorated features that are repaired or replicated include historic windows, door, and entrance stairs. Also the black wrought iron security fence has been powder-coated white to better blend in with the white lighthouse.
The most dramatic new feature will be atop the tower, “The Lantern,” or cupola. Itis a replica of the original “lantern”, the structure, removed decades ago, that surrounded the beacon.
The new “lantern” in the process of being built.
What a difference this will make in the appearance of the restored lighthouse!
How Did Points NE Historical Society Get Started?
By Jill Barkley, Co-Founder and Past President
PNEHS is celebrating its 35th Anniversary! Pop the champagne! Following is an article by Jill Barkley an- swering that question.
It began as a result of a small book written by Mavis Stears, called “Two Points of View.”
In 1985, Washington State was preparing for its Centennial Year. In general, the population began to recog- nize the historical significance of our past. Three strong women got together to discuss application to the State for a Historical Society to start collecting the history of our Browns Point, Dash Point and NE Tacoma communities. Mavis Stears, Jill Barkley, and Patty Hurlbutt created Bylaws, a mission statement and courses of action. On August 21, 1986, placement on the Washington State Historical Society was granted. The three were among the first presidents and curators of the Society with a strong, permanent nonprofit foun- dation. Purpose:” To provide for a permanent collection of records and items of history for the communi- ties of Browns Point, Dash Point and NE Tacoma, and “to provide a researched history of NE Tacoma com- munities for educational purposes.” A temporary museum was set up in donated space in the Browns Point Shopping Center. The idea was to see if there was community interest. Donations poured in. A Charter membership was created to fund a start-up with a goal of 100 memberships at $25 each. Browns Point Im- provement Club helped fund the start-up as well. Once these goals were accomplished, came the Centenni- al with a picnic sponsored by PNEHS at the Browns Point Lighthouse Park in celebration of the newly orga- nized Society. (Ice Cream social, anyone?)
The next step was to place the 1903 Lighthouse property on the National Historic Registry. Word was out that Lighthouse properties were being “surplused” by the Coast Guard. The property was, at that time, maintained by Metropolitan Park District of Tacoma. Community members feared that the property would be sold to developers. The entire property was placed on the National Historical Registry in 1989. In 1991, the Bunk House, with grants, donations, and volunteers, developed into a Research Center by the Historical Society. Many projects were launched, including the Surf Boat Replica, built in 1994. Local school partnerships were developed, as well as with community clubs in the areas.
The Historical 1994 Dash Point School was placed on the Washington State Historical Registry in 1996. It was eventually purchased by the North Point Co-operative Preschool and operates with Society support and (has) a small museum space inside the school. Both Dash Point School and Browns Point Lighthouse property are on the Pierce County Historical Registry.
The Lighthouse Cottage was (a rental for) the Metropolitan Park District of Tacoma for many years, and a goal was set to create a museum space to be operated by the Historical Society, in partnership with the Park District. This goal was accomplished, and the Society has accomplished many, many goals throughout the years on behalf of our local communities, Washington State, and National interests.
BP Lighthouse T-shirts will be available for purchase at our gift shop when they become available.
Don’t miss the rededication of
the new and improved Browns Point Lighthouse!
Oct 17, 2-4 pm. Keep the light shining!
Thank you to our Title Sponsors, Co-Sponsors, and Donors!
The Lighthouse Restoration Project is made possible through the support and generous donations of our title sponsors, The Bartolatz Family, The Jenkins Family Foundation, and Specialty Metals Corporation, and to our co-sponsors, Dash Point Social and Improvement Club, Browns Point Improvement Club, the Stensrud Family, Pat and Jim Harnish, Gregg Hoffman Construction, Butcher’s Above the Bay, Josh “Big Dog” Souza, the Collins Family, Better Properties Soundview, and Tom Smith “In Memory of Pam Halsan.”
Grants were received from The Ben B. Cheney Foundation, Port of Tacoma, Pierce County Heritage League, and Tacoma Landmarks Heritage Project.
And thank you to over 200 other Lighthouse Lovers for your individual donations. You have helped Points Northeast Historical Society to “Keep The Light Shining!”
How can I help?
Thank you for asking!
Points Northeast Historical Society is self-supporting, receiving NO funding from the US Coast Guard, taxes of any local, state, or federal entities.
Here is how you can help:
Stay safe, and stay tuned! We are working for you! Join us!
Nancy Bess, President
Lighthouse Park & Points NE Historic
Present Browns Point Lighthouse 1933
First Browns Point Lighthouse 1903
Dash Point Dock Today
Dash Point Dock 1917
Northeast Tacoma Neighborhood Today
Airstrip in Undeveloped NE Tacoma
Sign-Up or Renew your membership online!
Find out about local events in our community and keep Browns Point, Dash Point and NE Tacoma history alive.
From clam bakes to a fantastic Christmas party, you'll meet your neighbors and have a good time.
Learn about the various facilities which are part of the Points Northeast Historical Society. From the Cottage Museum, to the Bell House, the Boat House, the lighthouse & the Research Center, there’s plenty to discover.
Rent this 3-bedroom historic lighhouse keepers cottage on the shores of Puget Sound. Relax and watch sailboats, walk on the beach, fish from the shore, enjoy sunsets... and learn to be a Lighthouse Keeper.