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I enjoy doing fun things outdoors. Family adventures, hunting, fishing, hiking, photography, 4 wheeling, etc. Get out there and enjoy ... NOTE: PLEASE CLICK ON MY PHOTOS IN THE BLOG POST SO THEY WILL BECOME LARGER.

Sunday, May 19, 2024

Lighthouses from a Different Perspective … BE DIFFERENT …

There are many lighthouses up and down the coast.  A couple summers ago I was on the destination photo kick so I started hunting for lighthouses in the area.  Sunrise, mid-day, sunset, all times of the day.  Cold, snow, high winds, fog, haze, bad light, etc.  Since I don’t live close to any lighthouses, I make the best of it by taking the “it is what it is” approach.  It would be fun to revisit many of them.

When I take pictures, I like to try to BE DIFFERENT.  Digital cameras make it possible for most people with little or no photography knowledge to take pretty good pictures.  Some lighthouses are very popular tourist destinations.  I can assume almost everyone that has ever seen these popular ones have taken a picture of it so I want to BE DIFFERENT.  Some are not so popular and not easily seen or accessible from the shore, rocks, dock, etc.  A good telephoto lens might do the trick but again, if I stand right next to you and take a picture the subject will look like your picture.  An airplane, boat, drone, good photography skills, etc. or any combination of those can make things more interesting so BE DIFFERENT.

From my picture perspective, these lighthouses need to be something I want to take a picture of.  Several I tracked down were not up to my standards.  I passed on a lighthouse now surrounded by a parking lot, one surrounded by a chain-link fence and barbed wire, several no taller than 10 feet, etc. You get the idea.  I’m sure I will see more of them.

I do like to research so made a list of the lighthouse types by how they are built or by their shape.  They can be called a Bug, Caisson, Crib, Non-Screwpile (Straightpile), Screw-pile, Sparkplug, Texas Tower, or Wave-Washed.  As I find more types I will add them.

Annisquam Harbor Light was first established in 1801 and is one of the oldest lighthouses in MA.  I was up at 4:00AM and driving for an early morning sunrise.  The brick tower was replaced around 1897.  I liked the pink sky.

Eastern Point Light was built in 1832.  I was up early for the sunrise.  There was a hurricane off the coast that missed us earlier in the week so the waves were huge.

The big waves were a nice surprise and breached the 2,250-foot long "Dog Bar Breakwater" that marks the Dog Bar Reef.  The Dog Bar Breakwater Light marks its end.  It was built-in 1905.  Yes ... it is a lighthouse too.  

Ten Pound Island Light was originally built from stone in 1821 to help mariners avoid a dangerous ledge.  It was replaced by this 30-foot cast-iron structure in 1881 and was restored in 1989.

Goat Island Light Was built in 1833.  The walkway that connects the house to the tower was washed out to sea in the Blizzard of 1978.  The enclosed walkway from the house to the tower was rebuilt in 2011.  Before being enclosed it must have been a cold and windy walk in the winter.

Nubble Light was completed in 1879.  It is a very popular tourist destination.  I went there 2 mornings in a row. I arrived at 5:05AM the first morning and the lighthouse was lit up with Christmas lights.  When I asked a local told me they were celebrating Christmas in July to show the summer tourists what it looks like in December.  The fog rolled in and out several times. The second morning, again Fog … not what I wanted a second time but you must make the best of things.  Interesting how the fog was rolling over the water.  It looked more like the top of a mountain.

Straitsmouth Island Light was built in 1835 to mark the entrance to the harbor.  It used to have a 315-foot walkway to the oil house and quarters.  My guess is it either fell apart or was washed out to sea from a storm.

Thacher Island Twin Lights are the only currently operating twin lighthouses in America and the lights are 166 feet above sea level.  The island is named after Anthony Thacher.  He and his wife were the only 2 survivors out of 23 passengers and crew from a shipwreck caused by a great storm in 1635.  The twin lights were the eleventh and last lighthouses built under British rule and built on the island in 1771.  The waves crashing from a big storm would look spectacular.

Marblehead Light was originally built in 1835 as a wood and brick structure.  It was replaced in 1895 by this 105-foot skeletal structure.  It is the only tower of its type in New England.  

Portsmouth Harbor Light is the only lighthouse on the mainland of New Hampshire, Portsmouth Harbor Light (also known as Fort Point Light, New Castle Light, and Fort Constitution Light) was constructed in 1878 (48-foot tower) on the grounds of Fort Constitution, a Revolutionary War fortification.  You can see the openings in the walls for the cannons that protected the harbor.

Whaleback Light is a historic lighthouse marking the mouth of the Pisqataqua River in Kittery, Maine. It is located on a rocky outcrop offshore southwest of Fort Foster and south of Wood Island in Kittery. The present 50-foot tower was built in 1872.

Wood Island Station (Yes, I know this isn’t a lighthouse.  But it was right there!) is at the mouth of the Piscataqua River in Kittery Point, Maine has stood watch for 111 years. It housed men, brave “surfmen”, that were part of the US Life Saving Service (a forerunner of the US Coast Guard) who would wait with small rowing boats to go out to help mariners in distress in terrible conditions year-round.  Restoration started in 2011.

Wood Island Light was established in 1808.  It is Maine’s second oldest lighthouse and the nation’s eleventh oldest.  There were no windows in the house as it is being rebuilt.  This is one of several lighthouses I have seen using (or in this case will be using) solar panels.

Oak Island Light was built in 1958 with a height of 153 feet.  The first 40' feet of the tower is comprised of natural gray cement, while the next 50' feet is made up of white Portland cement and white quartz aggregate, and the final top portion is composed of cement and black paint.

Morris Island Light opened in 1876 with a height of 161 feet.  It used to have buildings attached to it.  In 1989, Hurricane Hugo struck Charleston, destroying the remaining buildings around the lighthouse, only leaving the actual tower standing.

Bakers Island Light was built on 10 island acres on the north side of Bakers Island approaching Salem harbor.  It went into service in 1798 with the current tower built-in 1821.  It was automated in 1972 and converted to solar power in 2000.  The tower height is 59 feet with a focal height of 111 feet.

Spring Point Ledge Light went into service in 1897.  The tower height is 54 feet.

Portland Head Light was originally built in 1791. It is an 80-foot tower with a 101-foot focal plane.  It is the most popular lighthouse in Maine. 

Portland Breakwater Light (Bug Light) was originally built in 1837.  The current cast-iron tower was built in 1875.

Ram Island Ledge Light was completed and lit in 1905.  The focal height is 77 feet.

Whitehead Island Light was established in 1804 and went into service in 1807.  The current 41-foot tower was built in 1852.  It is the third-oldest active light station in Maine.

Bass Harbor Head Light was built in 1858.  It is 33 feet in height on the edge of a cliff with a focal height of 56 feet.

Curtis Island Light was established in 1835, and the present structure was built in 1896.  It has a 25-foot tower with a Focal height of 52 feet.  The island shelters Camden Harbor for ocean storms.

Indian Island Light was established in 1850. The island was sold to the U.S. government for a light station by Silas Piper for $25 in 1849.  The present structure was built in 1875.  It is a 31-foot tower on the eastern side of the entrance to Rockport Harbor.  It’s a private residence now.

Marshall Point Light was established in 1832 with the present lighthouse built in 1857.  It has a 21-foot tower marking the entrance to Port Clyde harbor.  This is the lighthouse you see in the movie “Forest Gump”.

Owls Head Light was established in 1825 with the present lighthouse built in 1852.  Up high on a cliff, the tower is 30 feet with a focal height of 100 feet.

Pemaquid Point Light was established in 1827.  The current 38-foot tower is on a cliff with a focal height of 79 feet.

Rockland Breakwater Light has a 7/8-mile-long breakwater was built between 1881 and 1899 using around 700,000 tons of granite to protect the harbor. The lighthouse was established in 1902.  Its tower height is 25 feet with a focal height of 39 feet.  

Boon Island Light was established as a full light station and granite tower in 1811.  The current tower was constructed in 1855.  I haven’t had my buddy take me out to Boon Island Light in his boat so no pictures up close.  On a warm but clear vacation day, I spotted Boon Island from Kennebunkport 15.2 miles away, as it’s the tallest lighthouse in both Maine and New England at 133 feet with a focal plane at 137 feet above mean high water.  I hope to get closer someday.

Derby Wharf Light was built in 1871.  Its height is 13 feet with a Focal height of 25 feet.

Harbour Town Light was privately built in 1969 and is 93 feet tall with a focal height of 92 feet.

Tybee Island Light was originally built in 1736.  Pictured is the 4th tower that was built.  The previous towers had a rough go of being damaged or succumbing to storms, shoreline erosion, a Civil War burning, hurricanes, or an earthquake.  The present tower has a height of 144 feet.  It was fun taking the 178 stairs to the top.

Cockspur Island Light is a 46-foot-tall brick tower built in 1839 to guide ships into the South Channel of the Savannah River.  It was replaced in 1855 and has survived hurricanes and the Civil War Battle for Fort Pulaski.

Hunting Island Light tower construction was started in 1859 but was destroyed in the Civil War.  Construction started again in 1873 and finished in 1875. It stands 136 feet tall with a focal height of 130 feet.  Because of concerns for island erosion, it was designed and engineered to be moveable.  It was in fact, disassembled and moved to its current location in 1889 for that very reason.

Morgan Point Light was built in 1868 with a height of 52 feet and a focal height of 61 feet. It is at the mouth of the Mystic River. Impressive place, privately owned now, and not active.  I loved the granite and the slate shingles.

Latimer Reef Light built in 1804 and first lit in 1884 with a height of 49 feet and a focal height of 55 feet.  It rests on concrete or metal caisson so called a caisson lighthouse. Sometimes referred to as sparkplug lighthouses, or bug lights and coffee pots.  In this case the foundation is cast iron/concrete caisson.

New London Ledge Light was built in 1909 with a focal height of 58 feet.  On the Thames River, it guides vessels around the shoals and ledges at the entrance of the harbor.

Stoninton Harbor Light was built in 1840 with a height of 36 feet and a focal height of 62 feet.  It became a museum in 1925.

Saybrook Breakwater Light sometimes called Outer Light, was built in 1886 with a height of 48 feet and a focal height of 58 feet.  You can see Lynde Point Light in the background.  Both mark the harbor channel at the mouth of the Connecticut River and are about 3000 feet apart.

Mystic Seaport Light was built in 1966 with a height of 25 feet and a focal height of 26 feet.  It is a replica of the 1901 Brant Point Light on Nantucket Island.

Lighthouses have an interesting history.  Check some of them out yourself.  Also, if you click on the pictures they enlarge to view better.

I will add more as I explore ...