Report for Venus Point Rear Beacon (South Carolina) - 1885

District: 6th
Inspector: B.B. Smith, Asst. Engineer
Location: On S side of Jones Island, Savannah River.
Date of Report: 11/21/1885
Latitude: 32° 03' 47"
Longitude: 80° 56' 40"
Date of Reservation:
Date of Deed:
Date of Permission:
Date of Lease:
Area of the Entire Site: 1 3/4 acres
Area Inclosed:
Character of Soil: Mud
Distance of tower from Nearest High-Water Mark: 150'
Inclosures to Premises / Type of Fence: None
Wharf or Landing on Premises: Boat landing
Road to Land or Wharf Chararacter of and Distance: Walk on planks 200' from tower.
Means to Reach Light Station: By rail or steamboat to Savannah, GA., thence by hired boat.
Distance to Nearest Road: 10 miles to wharf at Savannah, GA.
Distance to Post Office: 10 miles
Distance to Village: 10 miles
Facilities for Public Conveyance: None after reaching Savannah
Facilities for Private Conveyance: Boats can be hired at Savannah, GA.
Means Used for Support of Lantern: Triangular skeleton iron structure
Number of Separate Lights: 1
First Built or Established: 1884
Last Rebuilt, Repaired, or Renovated: Never
Condition at This Date: Good
Shape of Tower in Plan: Triangular
Form of Tower:
Height from Base to Ventilator Ball: 83' from base to top of locomotive headlight lantern.
Height of Focal Plane Above Mean High Water: 85'
Background of Lighthouse as Seen from Sea: Sky
Color of Tower: Brown
Color of Tower/ How Produced: Paint
Tower Connection: Detached
Object of Navigation: 1 of system ranges for entering Savannah River, also a leading light for crossing river.
Building Materials: Iron with brick oil house attached at base.
General Description: Beacon is triangular iron structure of 6 series. 6 posts to 2 lower series, 3 to the others. Each series consists of posts, struts & tension rods. Lowest series rests on disks supported by & bolted to foundation. Corner disks are 28.3' apart.
Wall Thickness at Base:
Wall Thickness at Parapet:
Diameter at Base: 28.3' from center to center of inner disks.
Diameter at Parapet:
Kind of Stairway and Steps: Iron ladder
Number of Landings: None
Size of Glass: None
Number of Windows and Size of Sash: None
Number of Doors: None
Kind of Foundation and Depth Below Surface: Foundation consists of 20 piles 20' long upon which are fastened grillage timbers so that top surfaces are 6" below standing water. 6 brick piers rise from top of grillage. Anchor plates are below upper grillage & anchor bolts pass thru piers to disks.
Character of Soil Surrounding the Lighthouse: Mud
Soil Susceptibility: Not shifting & does not require protection. Overflowed by storm tides & sometimes by high springs.
Miscellaneous Remarks: A hoisting arrangement raises & lowers a locomotive headlight lantern which during the day is housed in the brick oil room attached to beacon & resting on same foundation serves also as oil room. Site not susceptible of cultivation w/o a system of dikes.
Lantern and Fixtures
Order of Lantern: Locomotive headlight lantern & reflector.
Shape of Lantern:
Diameter to Glass: 23" reflectors
Diameter in the Clear:
Number of Sides:
Type of Bars:
Thickness of Bars:
Height Glazed:
Number of Plates in Height:
Number of Plates Each Side:
Thickness of Plates:
Size of Plates:
Number of Storm Panes:
Unglazed Side of Lantern:
What Bearings:
Construction Material Lantern: Glass & iron
Construction Material Roof / Cowl: None
Ventilator / Cowl: None
Lightning Spindle: None
Description of Lightning Rod: None
Lantern Doors:
Floor of Lantern:
Watchroom Doors:
Parapet Diameter:
Location / Number: Upper part of lantern
Ladders / Cleaning Arrangement:
Curtain Hooks / Hanger:
Illuminating Apparatus
Kind of Apparatus:
Intensity in Candles:
Name of Maker:
Year Made:
Marks and Number:
Order of Apparatus: 23" Reflector in locomotive headlight lantern.
Inside Diameter: 23"
Light Characteristic: Fixed
Time of Revolution:
Flash Interval:
Duration of Flash:
Arc of Each Fixed Part: Range lights. Can be seen from E to SE.
Number of Panels:
Number of Flash Panels:
Arc of Each:
Number of Elements in Central Drum:
Number of Prisms Above Center Drum:
Number of Prisms Below Center Drum:
Does Apparatus Revolve?: False
Is There a Revolving Belt?: False
Revolving Panels:
How Flash is Produced:
Number of Vertical Elements Panel:
Fixed Lens Covered:
Service Table:
Draft Tube Description:
Revolving Machinery:
Standby and Description:
Chariot Float or Balls:
Chariot Description:
Length of Drop Tube:
Clock Weight:
Length of Winding Time:
Drive During Rewind:
Machinery Protection:
Lens Protection:
How Color is Produced: White
Red Sectors Description:
Where Color Attached:
Form of Colored Glass:
Lamp Description: Locomotive headlight lamp with 1 wick.
Type of Illuminant:
Number of Spare Lamps: 2
Number of Spare Burners: 2
Candle Power:
Closets and Store Rooms
Tower Closet Use:
Oil House Description: At base of beacon, so placed as to receive lantern when lowered during the day, as well as to serve as an oil house for mineral oil in boxed cans.
Oil House Inside Dimension:
Oil House Construction Material:
Oil House Capacity:
Other (Describe):
Location: 1 dwelling 100' in front of rear beacon & on range line.
Construction Materials: Wooden bldg resting on foundation similar to that of the beacon.
Number of Rooms: 4
Number of Dwellings: 1
Heating Plant:
Number of Keepers: 1 Keeper
Furnished Quarters:
NOT Furnished Quarters:
Outhouses: Privy & boat house
Outhouse Coloring:
Paths and Walks: Plank walk btwn dwelling & beacon & continued to boat house & privy.
Area Inclosed: None
Area of Garden: None
Area Timber or Shrubbery: None
Cultivation Area Available: None
Area Cultivated: None
Character of Surroundings: Soil mud, covered with tall reeds or marsh - ground fast.
Stove, Maker:
Stove, Size:
Sink, Maker:
Sink, Size:
Pump, Maker:
Pump, Size:
How Procured: Cisterns
Quality: Good
Quantity: Sufficient
Injury Possible: Not liable
Purity Precaution: Ventilation
Tank Capacity: 2500 gals - under dwelling
Tank Material: Brick & Portland cement mortar.
Distilling Apparatus: False
Distilling Manufacturer:
Well Description:
Well Diameter:
Well Lining:
Pump or Bucket:
What Power Used:
Distance from Dwelling:
General Opinion: Some danger from malarial fevers
Diseases: Malarial fevers
Prevalency: In Summer & Autumn
Local Causes: All around
Recommended Improvements: No
Access to Lighthouse: Boathouse & landing are on a small creek flowing into Savannah River & are connected with dwelling by plank walk 300' long.
Distance and Direction:
Miscellaneous Remarks: Beacon, premises & illuminating apparatus are in good condition & do not require any repairs or additions.