(508) 792-6627

Kenrick A.Claflin & Son

Historic Plum Island, Newburyport, Mass.

Welcome to Kenrick A. Claflin & Son


Featured on our web site and in our monthly web catalogues are new and out-of-print books, documents, post cards, photographs, maps and charts, engravings, lithographs, uniforms and insignia, tools, lamps, lens apparatus, equipment and apparatus and much more relating to these heroic services.

We now issue most of our catalogues on line rather than by mail. This allows us to issue more catalogues and feature more items, with better photos and descriptions. Let us know your email address and we will email you monthly as our catalogues are posted.

Type in your search word. After hitting Enter you will automatically be brought back to this page. Scroll down to this spot to see the results of search. Pages containing your search word will be listed. You will be allowed to click on the pages found. When on each page, Windows Explorer will allow you to use Ctrl + F to bring up a search box for that page. Type in your search word again and hit “Enter”. You will be taken to that item.


Historic Plum Island, Newburyport, Mass.

Posted on March 20, 2012

Historic Plum Island, Newburyport, Mass.

I recently had the opportunity to visit Plum Island on the Massachusetts North Shore. The island contains a wealth of lighthouse and Life-Saving Service history and with a little searching there are wonderful sights to be seen. Plum Island, a nine-mile long barrier island off the northern coast of Massachusetts. During its nineteenth-century heyday as a resort, steamships and a trolley line serviced Plum Island. The present Plum Island Lighthouse was first lighted on September 20, 1898, probably the third or fourth lighthouse on this site. The lighthouse still exists and is worth the trip. The Friends of Plum Island Light continue to care for it under a lease agreement with the city. The keeper’s house is used as housing for an official of the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge. Plum Island Light is easily reachable by car, and the lighthouse is sometimes open to the public on summer weekends.

Another location worth searching for is the early Plum Island (Merrimack River) Life-Saving Station. Constructed in 1873-1877, this early 1874-Type station is one of only a few remaining in the country. Although it is now a private residence, you can recognize it by its Gothic and Stick Style architecture. It can be photographed from the street (please don’t intrude on the owner’s land) and is worth the trip too. Who knows what else you will find while you are searching for this station.

For a number of wonderful early photos and books on the Plum Island stations, including PLUM ISLAND RECOLLECTIONS, (loaded with 80 never before published vintage photographs of the life of the U.S. life-savers on Plum Island – well worth the read) see our Recent Additions page.