History Videos

USLHS Historian Video #12 – Early Lighthouses Part One: Beginnings

Wickie from NHJeremy 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… Continue reading USLHS Historian Video #12 – Early Lighthouses Part One: Beginnings

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USLHS Historian Video #11 – Lighthouse Keepers: In Their Own Words

Some nuggets from Lighthouse Service keepers around the U.S. Wickie from NHJeremy 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… Continue reading USLHS Historian Video #11 – Lighthouse Keepers: In Their Own Words

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USLHS Historian Video #10 – Women Who Kept the Lights: In Their Own Words

From 1776 to the present day, more than 140 women have served as keepers of American lighthouses. Today, the only official keeper in the United States still employed by the U.S. Coast Guard is Sally Snowman at Boston Light Station. In addition to women light keepers, there were many assistant keepers and also countless wives… Continue reading USLHS Historian Video #10 – Women Who Kept the Lights: In Their Own Words

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USLHS Historian Video #9 – The second Minot’s Ledge Lighthouse

The first (1850) lighthouse at Minot’s Ledge, on the southern approach to Boston Harbor, was destroyed in an April 1851 storm, taking with it the lives of two young assistant keepers. The construction of the second tower was one of the great achievements in American lighthouse building. Constructed of 1079 blocks of granite weighing 3514… Continue reading USLHS Historian Video #9 – The second Minot’s Ledge Lighthouse

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USLHS Historian Video #8: The first Minot’s Ledge Lighthouse

Minot’s Ledge—about a mile offshore, near the border between the towns of Cohasset and Scituate on the south shore of Boston, Massachusetts—is a 25-foot-wide rock ledge that is part of the dangerous Cohasset Rocks. In 1847, Congress appropriated funds for a lighthouse on Minot’s Ledge. Capt. William H. Swift of the Corps of Topographical Engineers… Continue reading USLHS Historian Video #8: The first Minot’s Ledge Lighthouse

History Videos · Keepers

USLHS Historian Video #7: Keeper William C. Williams at Boon Island, Maine

Boon Island is a desolate pile of granite several miles off the southern Maine towns of Kittery and York. The present lighthouse, the third built on the island, went into service on New Year’s Day in 1855. It’s the tallest lighthouse in New England at 133 feet tall. Captain William Converse Williams, a native of… Continue reading USLHS Historian Video #7: Keeper William C. Williams at Boon Island, Maine

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USLHS Historian Video #6 – Destruction Island, Washington

The federal government considered putting a lighthouse on Destruction Island, about three miles off the Washington coast, as early as the mid-1800s. As shipping along this part of the coast increased, there were several shipwrecks around Destruction Island in 1888-1889 alone. A lighthouse was built between 1889 and 1891. Here is its story. Wickie from… Continue reading USLHS Historian Video #6 – Destruction Island, Washington

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USLHS Historian Video #5 – Race Rock Lighthouse, New York

The four-mile long stretch of water between Little Gull Island and Fishers Island to the northeast — known as The Race — marks the place where Long Island Sound, Block Island Sound, and Fishers Island Sound all meet. The Race develops currents in excess of five knots and has been treacherous to navigation for centuries.… Continue reading USLHS Historian Video #5 – Race Rock Lighthouse, New York

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USLHS Historian Video #4 – The Storm Child at Boston Light

Boston Light Station on Little Brewster Island in Boston Harbor, Massachusetts, was the site of the first lighthouse on the North American continent (1716). No child was born on the island until 1932, when a daughter was born to Josephine and Assistant Keeper Ralph Norwood. This is their unusual story, which was the inspiration for… Continue reading USLHS Historian Video #4 – The Storm Child at Boston Light

History Videos · Keepers

USLHS Historian Video #3 – Kate Walker at Robbins Reef

Kate Walker, who would become one of the most famous lighthouse keepers in the world, was born Katherine Gortler in Germany in 1846. She was appointed keeper at Robbins Reef Lighthouse off the northern tip of Staten Island in New York Harbor after her husband died in 1886. By her own account, Kate saved fifty… Continue reading USLHS Historian Video #3 – Kate Walker at Robbins Reef