Lighthouse docufilm features local historians
ROCKPORT — Paul St. Germain of Rockport and Eric Jay Dolin of Marblehead made their film debuts this month in “The Last Lightkeepers,” a documentary by Rob Apse.
Apse’s film profiles a handful of the nearly 200 remaining lighthouse keepers across New England.
“In 2000, the National Historic Lighthouse Preservation Act was passed which created a mechanism to dispose these structures to cities and non-profits first and as a last resort they are put up to bid for private ownership,” Apse wrote in an email. “And so, ‘The Last Lightkeepers’ covers the historic past of these structures and the important events surrounding them and parallels those stories and events with all the people behind the preservation efforts that is happening today.”
St. Germain stepped down as president of the Thacher Island Association, a nonprofit group dedicated to raising funds for the restoration and on-going maintenance of the island, last summer after 22 years. Over the past decade, he oversaw a massive, $3.2 million effort to open Straitsmouth Island off Rockport to the public for the first time in 180 years. Massachusetts Audubon assisted the association in the near decade-long effort to rehabilitate the island’s historic landmarks for public use, such as the $150,000 project to repair the iconic lighthouse in 2013. Straitsmouth Island finally reopened in 2019.