Tree Point is a historic lighthouse on the east shore of Revillagigedo Channel on the Southeast Alaska mainland, about 42 miles (68 km) northwest of Prince Rupert, and 48 miles (77 km) southeast of Ketchikan, Alaska. The light is currently an active and important aid to navigation on the Inside Passage to Alaska alerting mariners of the hazardous Lord Rocks at the south entrance to Revillagigedo Channel. Revillagigedo Channel extends about 35 miles (56 km) northwest from Dixon Entrance and is located 7 miles (11 km) north of the Canadian border between the mainland and Revillagigedo, Duke, and Annette Islands.
In 1901, President William McKinley signed an executive order setting aside 679 acres (275 ha) for a lighthouse reservation, which was later increased to 1,207 acres (488 ha). In 1903, the U.S. Lighthouse Board approved the construction of the Tree Point Lighthouse, the first and only lighthouse to be built on the Alaska mainland. The original octagonal wooden lighthouse was activated in 1904. This was replaced with a new Art Deco lighthouse built of reinforced concrete and activated in 1935. The station included three, six-room frame lightkeeper residences and a schoolhouse located behind a tree-covered hill for protection from ocean winds. A narrow-gauge tramway and boardwalk ran 200 yards (183 m) from the tower to the dwellings and then continued for another .25 miles (.4 km) to the boathouse and hoisting boom located on a small cove south of the lighthouse. To provide drinking water, a pipeline 2 miles (3.2 km) long linked a large cistern near the dwellings to a lake in the nearby hills.
The existing tower supports the original lantern house installed on the wooden 1904 light tower. This lantern house was designed to accommodate a third-order Fresnel lens and had been originally equipped with one displaying a kerosene burning fixed white light with a red sector to the south. Sometime between 1910 and 1918, the third-order lens was replaced by an occulting unit with a fourth-order Fresnel lens made by Henry LaPaute of Paris. U.S. Coast Guard records indicate that this fourth-order Fresnel lens remained the light station’s optic until 1963 when it was replaced. The fourth-order Fresnel lens is now displayed at the Tongass Historical Museum in Ketchikan. In 1969, the station was automated and reduced to a minor aid to navigation. The lighthouse was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2004. Read more here and here. Explore more of Tree Point and Revillagigedo Channel here: