Report for Bird Island (Massachusetts) - 1920

District: 2nd
Inspector: Frank J. Morse
Location: On Bird Island, Buzzards Bay, Mass.
Date of Report: 09/12/1920
Latitude: 41° 40' 10"
Longitude: 70° 43' 04"
Site: Purchase
Date of Reservation:
Date of Deed: 05/05/1819
Date of Permission:
Date of Lease:
Area of the Entire Site: About 2 3/4 acre
Area Inclosed: None
Character of Soil:
Distance of tower from Nearest High-Water Mark: 96'
Inclosures to Premises / Type of Fence: None
Wharf or Landing on Premises: Boatway & 2 piers
Road to Land or Wharf Chararacter of and Distance:
Means to Reach Light Station: By boat, Marion about 3 miles.
Distance to Nearest Road:
Distance to Post Office:
Distance to Village:
Facilities for Public Conveyance:
Facilities for Private Conveyance:
Means Used for Support of Lantern: Tower
Number of Separate Lights: One
First Built or Established: 1819
Last Rebuilt, Repaired, or Renovated: 1898
Condition at This Date:
Shape of Tower in Plan:
Form of Tower:
Height from Base to Ventilator Ball:
Height of Focal Plane Above Mean High Water: 37'
Background of Lighthouse as Seen from Sea: Sea
Color of Tower: White
Color of Tower/ How Produced: Whitewashed
Tower Connection: Covered way
Object of Navigation: Bay & guide to Cape Cod Canal entrance
Building Materials: Cobble stones
General Description:
Wall Thickness at Base:
Wall Thickness at Parapet:
Diameter at Base:
Diameter at Parapet:
Kind of Stairway and Steps: Granite winding
Number of Landings:
Size of Glass: 8" x 10"
Number of Windows and Size of Sash: 3; 2 - 8" x 10" - 12 lights; 1 - 8" x 10" - 8 lights
Number of Doors: 1 double each 2' 11.5" x 6' 3" sheathing
Kind of Foundation and Depth Below Surface:
Character of Soil Surrounding the Lighthouse:
Soil Susceptibility:
Miscellaneous Remarks: Old fashioned thick walls with batten both inside & outside, walls about 3' thick at bottom & 2' at top. Wooden half deck.
Lantern and Fixtures
Order of Lantern: 4th
Shape of Lantern: Cylindrical
Diameter to Glass: 7' 2" inside diameter
Diameter in the Clear:
Number of Sides:
Type of Bars: Helical
Thickness of Bars: 3/4"
Height Glazed: 2' 11.5"
Number of Plates in Height: One
Number of Plates Each Side:
Thickness of Plates: One
Size of Plates:
Number of Storm Panes:
Unglazed Side of Lantern: No
What Bearings:
Construction Material Lantern: Cast iron
Construction Material Roof / Cowl: Cast iron
Ventilator / Cowl: Cast iron
Lightning Spindle: Yes
Description of Lightning Rod:
Balustrade: Yes
Lantern Doors: Cast iron, upper part glazed
Floor of Lantern: Cast iron
Watchroom Doors: No watchroom
Parapet Diameter:
Location / Number: 4 in parapet wall
Ladders / Cleaning Arrangement: No
Curtain Hooks / Hanger: Yes

How is Watchroom Fitted: None
How is Relief Called: Electric stopping alarm
Where is Call System Led: To dwelling
Illuminating Apparatus
Kind of Apparatus:
Intensity in Candles:
Name of Maker: Henry LePaute, Paris
Year Made: Not known
Marks and Number: None
Order of Apparatus: 5th
Inside Diameter: 14 3/4"
Light Characteristic:
Time of Revolution: 160 sec.
Flash Interval: Continuous fixed
Duration of Flash: 5 secs.
Arc of Each Fixed Part: 360 degrees
Number of Panels: 4 each 90 degrees
Number of Flash Panels: 2
Arc of Each:
Number of Elements in Central Drum: 5
Number of Prisms Above Center Drum: 5 fixed
Number of Prisms Below Center Drum:
Does Apparatus Revolve?: False
Is There a Revolving Belt?: True
Revolving Panels: 2
How Flash is Produced: Flash panels revolving around lens
Number of Vertical Elements Panel:
Fixed Lens Covered:
Pedestal: Cast iron
Service Table:
Draft Tube Description:
Revolving Machinery:
Standby and Description:
Chariot Float or Balls: Chariot wheels
Chariot Description:
Length of Drop Tube:
Clock Weight:
Length of Winding Time:
Drive During Rewind:
Machinery Protection: Glass case
Regulated: Fan governor
Lens Protection: Cone
How Color is Produced:
Red Sectors Description:
Where Color Attached:
Form of Colored Glass:
Lamp Description: Haines kerosene
Type of Illuminant:
Number of Spare Lamps: 2
Number of Spare Burners: 3
Candle Power:

Clock Cord Description
Revolving Cord: 1/8" clock cord
Size of Clock Cord: 1/8"
Length of Clock Cord: About 60'
How Led: Through sheave
Diameter and Length of Clock Drum:
Closets and Store Rooms
Tower Closet Use:
Oil House Description: NE from tower
Oil House Inside Dimension: 7' 2" x 9' 3"
Oil House Construction Material: Cobble stones
Oil House Capacity: About 500 gallons
Other (Describe):
Fog Signal General
Fog Signal Kind: 1,000 lb bell
Time to Start: 1 minute
How Long Will Pressure Last:
Year of Manufacture:
Characteristic: 2 strokes, 12 sec silent
Duplication: A few of parts most likely to get out of order.
Timing Device:
If whistle, siren, or trumpet, Pressure at Which Blown:
Height Above Water:
Compass Direction:
Location: E side of entrance to Sippecan Harbor
Distance and Direction: About 175' SE'ly
Water Supply: None
Reached from Lighthouse: Path
Description of Fog Signal Building: Square tower about 30' tall with battering walls
Pressure And Recording Gauge:
Bell Signal
Weight: 1000 lbs
Metal: Bell metal
Time: 6 hours
Manufacturer: U.S. Machine Shop, Boston, Mass.
Weights for Operation:
Location: S'ly
Coloring: White
Construction Materials: Wood
Number of Rooms: 6
Number of Dwellings: 1
Heating Plant: Hot water
Number of Keepers: 1
Furnished Quarters:
NOT Furnished Quarters:
Outhouses: Privy, barn & fuel house
Outhouse Coloring: White
Paths and Walks: Plank walks part of the way to boat house
Area Inclosed:
Area of Garden:
Area Timber or Shrubbery:
Cultivation Area Available: Yes
Area Cultivated: About 1/8
Character of Surroundings: Sandy
Stove, Maker: Howe Monarch Premier
Stove, Size: 7-18
Sink, Maker: Cast iron
Sink, Size: 22" x 48"
Pump, Maker: Douglas
Pump, Size: #2
How Procured: Cisterns from roof of dwelling
Quality: Good
Quantity: Ample
Injury Possible: Yes, requires disconnecting at heavy W'ly storms & washing
Purity Precaution: Turned off when spray flies on roof
Tank Capacity: About 2000 gals.
Tank Material: Brick cisterns
Distilling Apparatus: False
Distilling Manufacturer:
Well Description:
Well Diameter:
Well Lining:
Pump or Bucket:
What Power Used:
Distance from Dwelling:
General Opinion: Healthful
Local Causes: No
Recommended Improvements: No
Access to Lighthouse: Boatslip & boathouse
Distance and Direction: About 200' NE'ly
Miscellaneous Remarks:
Boat #1
Boat Number: 113
Type: Dory
Length: 4' 6"
Width: 13' bottom
When Built: 1914
Date Harbored at Station: 7/7/1916
Sails: False
Suited to Work: Yes
Boat #2
Boat Number: 122
Type: Skiff
Length: 4'5'
Width: 10'
When Built: 1914
Date Harbored at Station: 1914
Sails: False
Suited to Work: Yes
Boat #3
Boat Number: 141
Type: Power Dory
Length: 4' 6"
Width: 13' bottom
When Built: 1919
Date Harbored at Station: 1919
Sails: False
Suited to Work: Yes

Power Boat
Engine Type: Arrow K-1 type
Horsepower: 2
Engine Maker:
Spare Coil:
Magnet: None
Battery: Dry cells
Propeller Diameter: 10"
Propeller Pitch: 16"

General Information:
Boats on Station: Boathouse