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The White River Light Station Museum is located in Whitehall right off the channel between Lake Michigan and White Lake. Originally the White River Lighthouse it was built in 1875 with the main effort coming from the first keeper of the light, Captain William Robinson, who faithfully served in that capacity for 47 years. At the end of the Civil War, Michigan's lumbering era was at its peak. The Muskegon and White Lake area was known as “The Lumber Queen of the World”. Shipping over the Great Lakes was the primary means of transportation for lumber, especially to Chicago and Milwaukee. The captains relied on the many lighthouses along the lakes to navigate these often dangerous “inland seas”. The White River Light Station was instrumental in helping ships to navigate the channel between Lake Michigan and White Lake. In the late 1870's the area became a main harbor for passenger steamers and a destination for summer tourists, still needing the enormous help of the White River Light Station. The lighthouse was deactivated in 1960 by the US Coast Guard and was then considered excess property and turned over to the General Services Administration. In 1965 Fruitland Township proposed to purchase the property to convert into a museum and park and the purchase was finalized in 1966. By late summer of 1970 the museum opened for the very first time. Now the museum features exhibits that include photos, paintings, artifacts, and stories that illustrate the areas Maritime History. The exhibits feature enterprises of the age, including shipping, logging, the Lighthouse Service, the fishing industry, and the resort center activities. They are a chronicle of local activities that are put into the larger perspective of regional Great Lakes Maritime History. The museum is open late May through October on Tuesday – Sunday. For a small admission fee, you can come out and enjoy this great area landmark and embrace the local Nautical and Maritime History.