Lighthouse Lecture Series - Michael Combs

Lighthouse Lecture Series - Michael Combs


On Saturday, July 20 at 5 p.m. Michael Combs will present "A 49er Looks Back" as part of the Lighthouse Lecture Series.

Michael's family moved to Point Arena in 1949 not long after his seventh birthday. The history of Point Arena was under 100 years old at that time but already included lumber booms and busts - the last driven by the post-WW II construction boom - Prohibition rum running, illegal gambling, hot-springs resort, “dog-hole” schooners, and feats of engineering that enabled lumbering.

Many of his friends and acquaintances were part of Point Arena life before 1900 and he’ll attempt to tell some of their stories and place them in the context of past events. Since he participated in more recent history - 1949 to 1969 – lived in an abandoned high school building, worked in sawmills, hayfields, drove a work horse, helped build our house, milked a cow, he’ll try to add a flavor of small-time life lived on what he half seriously called the frontier of civilization.

After graduation from Point Arena High in 1960, Michael went to Humboldt State a year, Santa Rosa Junior College a year, then the Air Force for 21.5 years – married his high school sweetheart Marilynn (they had three sons) - and attended five other colleges while in the Air Force. He started as a Russian linguist, then became a Budget and Finance Officer and Internal Auditor. After 14 moves, an MBA and CPA, he retired from the Air Force and worked at Lockheed, Sunnyvale, for ten years, then on to some other jobs including Kaiser Permanente, Oakland, and Nummi, Fremont. Marilynn died of breast cancer in 1988 just after their 25th anniversary, and he chose his current wife Alice from a book and they married in 1989. He retired in 1998 and he and Alice moved to Gualala, which they love over all places, while traveling quite a bit and loving coming home. Every day they play ball with their doggie Radar on Cook’s Beach and remind themselves not to take their wonderful lives here on the coast for granted.

Admission is $5 per person.

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Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day

10am - 4:30pm

Rest of the year

10am - 3:30pm

Closed Thanksgiving & Christmas Days

Admission Prices:

Site Visit Fee

Members and Children under 12


12 and over


Tower Tour (in addition to site visit fee)

4 and over



877-725-4448, ext. 1 or

707-882-2809, ext. 1



45500 Lighthouse Road

P. O. Box 11

Point Arena, CA 95468