The present lighthouse at the end of the Gurnet Peninsula at the entrance to the harbor of Plymouth, Massachusetts, built in 1843, is the oldest free-standing wooden lighthouse in the United States. The original lighthouse on the site consisted of a keeper’s dwelling built in 1768 with two lights on its roof. It was the continent’s first “twin lights,” and in 1776 Hannah Thomas became the first female light keeper in the American colonies when her husband, keeper John Thomas, left to lead troops in the Revolutionary War.
The light station celebrates its 250th anniversary later this month. Project Gurnet and Bug Lights Inc. is a nonprofit organization that was founded in 1983 to preserve the lighthouse along with nearby Duxbury Pier (“Bug”) Lighthouse. The group will host the birthday party for the lighthouse from 6 to 10 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 22, at the Plymouth Yacht Club. Tickets are $50 per person and include hearty hors d’oeuvres, a silent auction and more. There will be a cash bar. Nautical attire is encouraged.
Visit www.buglight.org to learn more and to buy tickets.
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Candace was the US Lighthouse Society historian from 2016 until she passed away in August 2018. For 30 years, her work involved lighthouse history. She worked with the National Park Service and the Council of American Maritime Museums. She was a noted author and was considered the most knowledgable person on lighthouse information at the National Archives. Books by Candace Clifford include: Women who Kept the Lights: a History of Thirty-eight Female Lighthouse Keepers , Mind the Light Katie, and Maine Lighthouses, Documentation of their Past.
One thought on “Plymouth “Gurnet” Lighthouse (MA) celebrating its 250th birthday in style”
Oops – there was a typo in the version of this story that was emailed to subscribers. In the body of the story it said that the light station is celebrating its “150th anniversary” this month; obviously, that should have said 250th anniversary, and it has been corrected.