Curiosities: Lighthouse Living

You won’t find one of Door County’s most unusual lodgings on any vacation-rental website. That’s because only select individuals are allowed to book a stay at the Sherwood Point Lighthouse, which stands at the southwestern entrance to Sturgeon Bay. It was established in 1883 and is named for Peter Sherwood, who settled on the point in 1836. 

Peninsula Pulse writer Celeste Benzschawel got to experience the rare opportunity when her father, a retired military veteran, rented it in January 2020. 

“It wasn’t what I was expecting,” Benzschawel writes at “It was more like staying at a cottage or lake house because the door to the lighthouse tower was padlocked shut and we weren’t allowed to explore it. I don’t mean to sound ungrateful for such a unique experience, but what the heck is the point of staying in a lighthouse if you can’t actually go into the lighthouse part?”

On the plus side — at least for those who are into the paranormal — the lighthouse does have a ghost. Minnie Hesh, niece of the original lighthouse owners, took over with her husband as assistant keeper when her aunt and uncle died. 

It’s said that Hesh died of a heart attack in the upstairs bedroom and has since made herself known to visitors as a friendly presence. People have heard strange noises and female laughter, and they’ve found nice touches such as clean dishes in the kitchen and tucked-in bedsheets upon waking in the morning.

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