The Charlotte-Genesee Lighthouse Historical Society, founded in 1983, preserves and interprets the history of America's oldest surviving lighthouse on Lake Ontario, which stands on a bluff overlooking the mouth of the Genesee River in Rochester's historic Charlotte neighborhood.
Visitors can climb to the top of the tower, built in 1822, or view exhibits in the 1863 keeper's house about the history of the site, the port and the lakefront. Last year visitors came from 42 U.S. states and 15 other countries.
The society, whose legal name is the Charlotte-Genesee Lighthouse Preservation Society Inc., also offers educational activities and holds monthly programs on local and marine history, including lectures about Charlotte, Lake Ontario and the Port of Rochester. This fall the Lighthouse Society and the Landmark Society of Western New York plan to cooperate to present a guided walking tour Oct. 6 of historic Charlotte on the river's west side, and a tour on Oct. 13 is to showcase the Summerville area of Irondequoit on the river's east side.
The Lighthouse Society collects books, maps, photographs, paintings and artifacts related to Rochester's history, particularly its rapid development with the commercialization of agriculture and the significant role this region played in America's westward expansion. Current exhibits are "The Port during the Civil War," "Souvenirs from a Day at the Beach" and, until Sept. 17, "Lincoln and New York," a traveling version of an acclaimed exhibit from the New York Historical Society.
The lighthouse is open Friday through Monday afternoons from May to September, but tours are arranged at other times by request.
The society is an all-volunteer organization with no employees; Robert Owens Jr. is president. The lighthouse is at 70 Lighthouse St., and its website is www.geneseelighthouse.org.
Financial Record Year ended March 31, 2011
Donations, grants, membership dues $41,847 67
Program and earned revenue 11,286 18
Investment income 759 1
Other 8,825 14
Total revenue $62,717 100
Occupancy $18,765 39
Grant- and donor-funded projects 9,827 20
Programs 5,400 11
Other 14,585 30
Total expenses $48,577 100
Excess (deficiency) of revenue over expenses $14,140
Board of Trustees
Robert Owens Jr., president; retired director of television programming, WXXI Public Broadcasting Council
Douglas Moran, vice president; retired engineering model maker, Eastman Kodak Co.
Geraldine Sauter, treasurer; retired faith formation administrator, Our Lady of Mercy Church
William Briggs, secretary; owner, Lakeside Floral & Antique Gallery LLC
Frederick Amato; retired fire and security systems planner, Eastman Kodak Co., and retired member, Monroe County Legislature
Lea Bancroft; financial planner, Bancroft & Associates
Thomas Clayton; tax specialist, Harris and Co.
Eugene Lake Edwards; licensed home inspector and owner, Roarke Services
Joseph Genova; retired educator, Rochester City School District
Phillip Hurwitz; attorney
Rev. John Lee; adjunct professor of archaeology, St. John Fisher College
Michael May; group leader, computer software, Excellus BlueCross BlueShield
Anna Pensgen; technical designer, Edge Architecture PLLC
Gregg Roegner; communication research adviser, 9-1-1 Emergency Communication Department, Monroe County
Lawrence Kirk Simpson; coordinator of shared technical services, Genesee Valley/Wayne Finger Lakes Educational Technology Service
Linda Summers; president, Nagel & Summers Inc.
Carolyn Vacca; Monroe County historian and assistant professor of history, St. John Fisher College
-Researched by James Leunk
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