Articles

The History of Lighthouses

You can access a selection of articles from past issues The Keeper's Log magazine here. Simply select from the sections below.

About 1876, the Lighthouse Service decided it would be a good idea to provide a small library at isolated stations to improve morale. The Annual report of that year States, "During the past year the board has collected fifty small libraries, consisting of about 40 volumes each, for use at the more isolated light stations. It is intended that each library remain about six months at a place, when it will be exchanged for another.

This article is an attempt to correct some of the myths that have been perpetuated for some time concerning lighthouse locations, lighthouse structures and, most importantly, the illuminating apparatus used in them. I have little expectation that I will put an end to such tales but if I can correct any of the confusion that exists about lighthouses then this will have been a worthwhile effort.

The Point Wilson Lighthouse, marking the entrance to Admiralty Inlet, was built by the Lighthouse Service. At 51 feet above the water, the lens is the highest of all the lighthouses on Puget Sound. The 1914 lighthouse replaced an earlier wooden lighthouse which was con¬structed in 1879. The Point Wilson Lighthouse, lo¬cated in Fort Worden State Park near Port Townsend, is on the National Register of Historic Places and the Washington State Heritage Register. It is one of the most important navigational aids in Washington, a link connecting Puget Sound and the Strait of Juan de Fuca.

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