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Point Prim showcases history and the view from above at social

Max and Robert Hersey, Mary Tibbetts and Kevin Ellis stand at Point Prim, which hosted a social and open lighthouse Saturday, September 16.
Max and Robert Hersey, Mary Tibbetts and Kevin Ellis stand at Point Prim, which hosted a social and open lighthouse Saturday, September 16.

DIGBY, NS – Nearly one hundred people came out to explore and enjoy Point Prim Lighthouse for its annual open house September 16.

The Friends of Point Prim Society hosted the event, which included the annual Fundy Erratics hike to the Princess Louise Monument.

Association chair Robert Hersey was on hand to help host the social and also for heritage tours for small groups of people, giving them a glimpse into the site’s rich history.

“Many people climbed to the top of the lighthouse today to see the view from above. That’s a pretty unique experience,” said Hersey.

 

A hub of heritage

The event ran from 2 to 5 p.m. Saturday afternoon and was attended by Digby residents, other area locals and people from away.

Hersey, who regularly gives heritage tours at the site, described the many lightkeepers over the years and the Princess Louise Shipwreck of 1883.

The plaque dedicated in memory to Louis O. Coxe. It reads, “Deep peace of the deep sea.”

He also had a new topic to introduce today: a plaque that had gained mythic proportions before being recently rediscovered.

“This plaque is in memory of Louis O. Coxe, a naval officer and author who wrote about seafaring,” said Hersey.

Coxe and his wife, Edith Windsor, honeymooned in Digby, falling in love with Point Prim and its ocean views. They returned several times over the years, and after Coxe died, the plaque was installed in his memory.

“We knew the plaque was here, but not exactly where it was. It’s one more interesting element of this site – he was pretty well renowned, and loved Digby enough to revisit countless times,” said Hersey.

 

One of first openings of lighthouse

Since the Municipality of the District of Digby only recently acquired the property, this was among the few times in recent years people have been able to climb to the top of Point Prim’s lighthouse.

The view from the lighthouse is best enjoyed from above. Kevin Ellis, whose great-grandfather, William Ellis, was the lighthouse keeper at Point Prim for many years, climbed to the top for the first time Saturday. “I have a personal connection to this place. What a stunning view,” he said.

“We did have it open a few years ago for the Lights Along the Shore initiative, but other than that this is really the first time it’s happened,” said Hersey.

It’s a spot that many have treasured even from the ground, but made even more special from above for people like Kevin Ellis, whose great-grandfather was lighthouse keeper at the site from 1875 to 1912 and inventor of the automatic foghorn it used.

“With that strong family connection, you can’t help but feel a strong tie to this place,” said Ellis.

“He stood up here, and now I am too, for the first time.”

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