Lighthouse News of the Week

News of the week October 28, 2022

Sanibel (FL) Lighthouse leg found, plans made to restore it

The Sanibel Lighthouse has stood for more than a century as a beacon of light, both literal and figurative for Sanibel Island, said Sanibel mayor Holly Smith.

Sanibel Island lighthouse, photo by Maria Goodchild

Smith’s email inbox has been filled with messages, some from around the world, about preserving and restoring the lighthouse from the peril presented to it by Hurricane Ian.  

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Historic N.J. lighthouse ‘Old Barney’ to shine again after $1.3M makeover

From out of the darkness shall come light on Saturday when people gather at the Barnegat Lighthouse on the northern tip of Long Beach Island to give new life to an old landmark.

Barnegat Lighthouse, photo by Ralph Eshelman

An hour after sunset, a park ranger will flip the switch on the new beacon at the lighthouse, which has been dark since March during a $1.3 million renovation. The bricks have been repointed and there’s a fresh coat of paint. “Old Barney,” which dates to 1859, is set to resume its role of guiding sailors and drawing visitors to the Barnegat Inlet.

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DHS to Stabilize Its Historic Lighthouse on Plum Island (NY)

The historic Plum Island Light Station is undergoing a project to stabilize its structure and prevent further deterioration. The project, led by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate (S&T), will refurbish the lighthouse’s cast iron tower and associated components, as well as the roof of the lighthouse keep’s quarters to reflect its historical significance and confirm that both components are structurally sound. S&T is working closely with the New York State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) to confirm proper selection of materials in the stabilization project to maintain historic character and authenticity in a manner consistent with the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for Rehabilitation.

Plum Island lighthouse, photo by Robert Bachand

Constructed in 1869 and put into service in 1870, the Plum Island Light Station was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in February 2011. The lighthouse property also includes a brick oil house that was built around 1900 and a wood-framed storage shed that was constructed around 1920—all of which are located on a three-acre parcel on the northwestern tip of Plum Island. Various assessments over the past decade have indicated degradation in the structure and the need for significant repairs.

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Hunting for ghosts in the Portsmouth (NH) Lighthouse

One man’s death trap is another’s $192,000. That’s right: the U.S. government put up an old, rundown lighthouse for sale in Maryland and someone paid too much money for it. But we get it, who wouldn’t want to throw on a Chris Evans Knives Out-esque sweater and sip their tea by the seaside?

Portsmouth Harbor lighthouse, photo by Chad Kaiser

We loved the idea of lighthouses, but we’re pretty positive they are all haunted. So we set out to test that theory. Jeremy D’Entremont is a self-described lighthouse guy; he’s a historian for both the American Lighthouse Foundation and the U.S. Lighthouse Society, but he’s also a ghost hunter. “My feeling is whether or not you believe there are ghosts or however you want to describe it, I believe that the spirits of the keepers are with us one way or another, figuratively or literally.”

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A day in the life of the Split Rock (MN) Lighthouse keeper

In all of Split Rock’s 112-year history, the lighthouse has always had a keeper. Right now, that person is Hayes Scriven, a self-described “history geek.” He and his family live on site.

Split Rock lighthouse, photo by Thomas A Tag

“It is definitely like a surreal experience. When we first moved here in January, the first night, we went to bed and we’re like, we’re sleeping at Split Rock. This is so cool,” he remembered.

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The haunted Point Aux Barques Lighthouse (MI) in the Thumb

Haunted houses and stories are a big thing during this time of season, and for Thumb residents, there’s one particular lighthouse that has an interesting story behind it.

Pointe Aux Barques lighthouse, photo USLHS archives

The Point Aux Barques Lighthouse in Port Hope, along the shoreline of Lake Huron and the Thumb of Michigan, helped guide sailors and ships across the lake after it was built in 1847. In 1849, the first lighthouse keeper, Peter Shook, drowned while he and some friends were sailing to Port Huron to pick up supplies for the lighthouse.

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Brick Historical Society to Host Program on N.J.’s Lighthouses

The Brick Township Historical Society will host a program on the history of New Jersey’s lighthouses later this month.

Sea Girt lighthouse, photo by Jeff Gales

The talk, hosted by Bill Dunn, the Sea Girt Lighthouse historian, is scheduled for Nov. 15 at 7:30 p.m. at the Herbertsville Firehouse, 601 Herbertsville Road. (The event was originally scheduled for Nov. 8, but was recently changed.)

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California Lighthouse Guards Peninsula Coastline: Photo Of the Day

Perfect weather compliments the perfect scenery.

Pigeon Point lighthouse, photo by Cheryl Costella (not the photo from the article)

HALF MOON BAY, CA — When you drive on Highway 1 between Half Moon Bay and Santa Cruz, one of the iconic views is Pigeon Point Lighthouse on the San Mateo County Coastline. Tom Regner snapped this beautiful photo in 2020.

Click here to see the actual winning photo of the day

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The dark side of Maine’s lighthouses

With Halloween little more than a week away, thoughts inevitably turn to stories of the spirit world, and Maine’s lighthouses are as much a part of that fascination as the scary old abandoned house at the end of the street.

Sequin Island lighthouse, photo by Mike & Carol McKinney

For more than two centuries, reports of supernatural hauntings connected to grisly tales of tragedy, both fact and fiction, have surrounded the iconic shoreline beacons of the Pine Tree State much like the fog that they battle with their guiding lights.

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Light the Cockspur Island (GA) Lighthouse Again!

Since the mid-1800s, the Cockspur Island Lighthouse has sat atop her very short throne marking the entrance to the South Channel of the Savannah River.

Cockspur Island lighthouse, photo by Ralph Eshelman

In her prime, the shortest lighthouse in Georgia guided ships into the South Channel until the early 1900s, when the navigation route was altered to accommodate larger ships.

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The remote Irish Blacksod Point lighthouse that changed the course of the Second World War

On the western edge of Europe, flanked by a pretty fishing village, pristine beaches and dramatic mountains, a historic lighthouse monitors the Atlantic Ocean. It is small and unremarkable in appearance. Yet Ireland’s Blacksod Lighthouse has an extraordinary legacy tied to one of the most important days in history.

Blacksod Point Ireland, photo USLHS archives

In 1944, at the height of the Second World War, more than 150,000 lives depended on an Irish couple working in this building. Visitors can now tour the lighthouse where Maureen and Ted Sweeney changed the course of history by delivering crucial weather reports that convinced the Allies to delay the D-Day invasion of Normandy.

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U.S. Lighthouse Society News is produced by the U.S. Lighthouse Society to support lighthouse preservation, history, education and research.

If you have items of interest to the lighthouse community and its supporters, please email them to Jeremy D’Entremont at

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