Being from the prairies, I have always had a fascination with grain elevators. I imagine for those who grow up in close proximity to the ocean or other large body of water, lighthouses fill that role.
Both grain elevators and lighthouses are often the tallest structures around. And, just as ships used lighthouses for navigation, many a prairie traveler have used grain elevators to orient themselves as they navigate the seas of wheat.
However, whereas grain elevators were the social hub of the community, lighthouse keepers often were lonely and solitary places. Commonly built on rocky outcrops or other isolated sections of land, lighthouses were rarely visited by outsiders, other than those bringing in supplies.
However, over the decades, both lighthouses and grain elevators have become symbols of a past era that has been largely rendered obsolete by technology. Massive concrete terminals have replaced the wooden country grain elevator and GPS and other navigational advancements have replaced the lighthouse. They are kindred spirits and perhaps that is why I have always been drawn to lighthouses whenever I travel to places where they are found.
It’s no wonder we took the time to visit six lighthouses along the Oregon coast as part of our “Coastal or Postal Tour”. Come check them out with us.