Looking for a photo of Eli Bates - Milwaukee Lighthousekeeper and Chicago Lumber Trader


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Looking for a photo of Eli Bates - Milwaukee Lighthousekeeper and Chicago Lumber Trader
Posted by: amybizzarri ()
Date: August 08, 2015 07:58PM

I'm looking for a photo of Eli Bates - once a lighthouse keeper at North Point Lighthouse in Milwaukee then a lumber buyer/trader in Chicago. Email me at [email protected]

"Eli Bates, a former school teacher, was the keeper of the lighthouse, and he supplemented his $300 annual salary by running a gingerbread and small beer stand in part of the whitewashed brick keeper's dwelling. Early Milwaukeeans quipped that “the seven lanterns which hung in the lantern house were not all that was lit nightly, for cork legged Eli Bates, the keeper, had always a table or two of the gayest young blades in town playing cards and bending elbows until the dawn.”

More info at....http://www.lighthousefriends.com/light.asp?ID=245

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Re: Looking for a photo of Eli Bates - Milwaukee Lighthousekeeper and Chicago Lumber Trader
Posted by: bowler ()
Date: August 17, 2015 03:30PM

Just wanted to mentioned I tried looking for a photo. There are snippets about his life online and in the Chicago Tribune over the years. Much of it centers around his lumber business and contributions after his death, but no photos. Also quite a few mentions of his lighthouse days in old publications but again no photos.

Given that his photo was not in the Tribune, perhaps it appeared in a Milwaukee newspaper or if there is a local historical society for the area around the lighthouse, that may be worth a try.

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Re: Looking for a photo of Eli Bates - Milwaukee Lighthousekeeper and Chicago Lumber Trader
Posted by: amybizzarri ()
Date: August 27, 2015 12:52AM

Thanks for your reply. I'm still searching high and low for something - I'll post here if I dig up anything!

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Re: Looking for a photo of Eli Bates - Milwaukee Lighthousekeeper and Chicago Lumber Trader
Posted by: daveg ()
Date: September 02, 2015 04:59PM

Wonder if the Chicago History Museum or Newberry Library might have a photo of Eli Bates, if one exists. And BTW, he donated the money (40K) for the Abraham Lincoln: The Man (aka Standing Lincoln) statue in Lincoln Park, unveiled in 1887. He lived on Dearborn Parkway a bit south of North Ave. My guess is he could see the statue from his home.

There's a Eli Bates fountain in Lincoln Park as well.

A link to his MKE lighthouse story:

http://www.milwaukeehistory.net/museum/exhibits/online-exhibit/unlocking-the-vault/lighthouse-lens-text/



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 09/02/2015 05:13PM by daveg.

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Re: Looking for a photo of Eli Bates - Milwaukee Lighthousekeeper and Chicago Lumber Trader
Posted by: Anonymous User ()
Date: September 02, 2015 06:18PM

My name is Mark Kuehn. I'm the Curator at the North Point Lighthouse Museum in Milwaukee. Eli Bates was our first keeper at the original 1837 light house at the end of what is now Wisconsin Ave. I have a panel about him in our museum. But no photo. If any one should find a photo or a painting or litho of him please contact me at [email protected] Free 1 year membership to the NPLH to the first one who finds his picture. northpointlighthouse.org. Thanks. Happy hunting. By the way, he had a cork leg. Was one of Milwaukee's first public school teachers. Went on to run the Bates and Mears Lumber Company in Chicago.

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Re: Looking for a photo of Eli Bates - Milwaukee Lighthousekeeper and Chicago Lumber Trader
Posted by: daveg ()
Date: September 03, 2015 01:58PM

Thanks for stoppin' by Mark. I'm on the hunt for a photo or any image of Eli. On my next visit to the Chicago History Museum research library, I'll ask.

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