The Round Island Lighthouse was completed in 1895. Operating under the auspices of the United States Government, this facility was in continuous use for fifty-two years. It was manned by a crew of three until its beacon was replaced by an automated light in 1924. A sole caretaker occupied and operated the station from 1924 to 1947. Following the construction of a new automatic beacon near the breakwater off the south shore of Mackinac Island, the lighthouse was abandoned. The United States Forest Service now supervises the structure which is located in the Hiawatha National Forest. The lighthouse serves as a sentinel for the past, reminding visitors of the often precarious sailing and rich history of the Straits of Mackinac.