Sandy Neck is a half-mile wide, six-mile long peninsula on the north side of Cape Cod, marking the entrance to Barnstable Harbor as well as the approach to the small harbor at Yarmouthport. A light station at the eastern tip of Sandy Neck went into service on October 1, 1826. The original lighthouse was replaced in 1857 by the 48-foot brick tower that still stands.
Barnstable Harbor gradually declined in importance, and shifting sands left the lighthouse in a less advantageous position. In the summer of 1931, the lighthouse was decommissioned and its lens was moved to a steel skeleton tower 200 feet closer to the tip of Sandy Neck. The lantern was removed from the lighthouse and the property was sold at auction in 1933. In 1944, the property was sold to Fred Lang, a radio personality. Lang sold the property to the Hinckley family in 1950. Since 2000, Ken Morton has managed the light station for the family.
The installation of a new lantern began in the spring and summer of 2007. The job was completed in the fall, and in October 2007 the lighthouse was relighted as a private aid to navigation, with a modern LED optic.
Jeremy D’Entremont is the author of more than 20 books and hundreds of articles on lighthouses and maritime history. He is the president and historian for the American Lighthouse Foundation and founder of Friends of Portsmouth Harbor Lighthouses, and he has lectured and narrated cruises throughout the Northeast and in other regions. He is also the producer and host of the U.S. Lighthouse Society podcast, “Light Hearted.” He can be emailed at Jeremy@uslhs.org