"There's a legend surrounding the Hope Island lighthouse near Christian Island Ontario on Georgian Bay. After reading the story of Captain Tripp; I thought this one would be great for readers. Beausoleil First Nation is a reserve located on Georgian Bay that has a total 3 islands under its status. One being the reserve itself where folks live and another being Hope Island where the lighthouse stands, the third is Beckwith Island. In the late 1800's there was a great change happening on the islands, it was a place with seemingly endless supplies of lumber and other natural resources with the local population expanding. The passage between all islands was used regularly for vessels carrying materials to reach Victoria Harbour or upwards to Lake Superior. Georgian Bay was created by an ancient ocean so the waters are incredibly deep with the water being hard to navigate and the sunken ships to prove it. During this time, there were 2 lighthouses in operation one on Christian Island - John Hoar (reserve settlement) and the other on Hope Island (Albert Collins). The two lighthouse keepers were paid an annual salary of $450 and expected to maintain the houses. Time goes on and the two lighthouse keepers switch stations so Collins' children can attend school near Christian Island since Hope Island is often (and still is) a hard place to get to. Hoar built a stable he wanted to take with him to Hope Island, but was refused. He was outraged. Hoar also wanted to leave Christian Island because of the poor living conditions so he was understandably upset after Collins was given money for repairs immediately upon arrival to Christian Island. Hoar complained to the Coast Guards and because of how irate he was, he was replaced with Thomas Marchildon. Once Thomas tried to go to Hope Island, he was greeted by Hoar's shotgun and camped at shot-distance from Hoar on the shores of the island. Then fishermen Francois Marchildon and William Lacourse went missing off the shores of Hope Island. According to local tales, the two had been murdered and buried under the steps of the Hope Island Lighthouse. In 1906, there was evidence enough that this was true and relatives Severe Marchildon and Alfred Marchildon went to the Hope Island lighthouse and dug up the stairs but found nothing. But, rumours persisted the pair were buried elsewhere on the island and that Johnny Hoar admitted to killing the pair on his deathbed. To this day, Hope Island is completely vacant, there is no life but the birds and Eagle's nest where the latern used to be. Sometimes referred to as 'Snake Island' the island also has an incredible amount of snakes living about. In the 1950's-1970's Christian Island's main exports was lumber and other natural materials. My own family members who have had to camp on the island for work say that they will NEVER stay on the island overnight again. They told us about lights they'd see over the water, Vessel bell's ringing in the distance, voices from the other side of the island, steps on the lighthouse stairs."
Series of photos of the lighthouse as it has appeared over the years generously provided to the OGHRS by the writer of the above report.
For more information on the islands including tourist info please visit the Beausoleil First Nation website.
The following was sent to us in 2013:
"I just read your story of ghosts on Hope Island and wanted to share mine. My father was a lighthouse keeper at Hope many years ago and we would all enjoy summers on the island. When I married my husband and I went out for a visit, decided to go for a walk in the bush, and in my arrogance I thought I new my way completely, even though the path was quite overgrown. Needless to say my overconfidence got us quite lost. We walked in circles for hours and when it got dark we stopped in a clearing and lit a fire. I fell asleep and when I woke up it was daylight so I told my husband we should go this way because im sure the shoreline is not far away and if we can get to shore I can find my way easily. He looked at me as if I was crazy and said 'no ,we have to go that way". He was very insistent so I asked him why he was so sure. He said what do you mean ? That is the way those guys said to go . They said the shore is just the other side of those trees." I asked him what guys and he said "Those two old geezers we met on the path." Of course I argued with him since I had not seen another living soul but thought I would humour him . Within a minute we were on the shore
I might add my husband had never heard the story of the two men....I had forgotten it myself and this was his first visit. When we got back to the light station and told them our story my Dad said it must have been the ghosts. We have no other explanation, but I never saw anyone . My husband insists to this day he saw them plainly and can describe them."