Long Island Head Light

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Long Island Head Light

Location: northeastern point of Long Island in Boston Harbor near Quincy, MA
Photo by: Jim Tracy
Source: USBeacons

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About Long Island Head Light

The location of the light is northeastern point of Long Island in Boston Harbor. The nearest city is Quincy, MA. The station was first established in 1819. The current lighthouse was first lit in 1901.

The lighthouse is a cylindrical tower.

The tower has a flashing white light at a focal plane height of 120 ft above mean high water. The light has a nominal range of 6 nautical miles. The tower height is 52 ft. The light has a period of 2.5 seconds.

Open to the Public?: No    Active?: Yes

Identification number: 1-10800 (U.S.)
Identification number: J0337 (International)

The 1819 lighthouse was a stone tower 20 ft tall, topped by a 7 ft tall lantern with a soapstone roof. It was built high on a hill at the northern end of the island. The focal plane of the light was 109 ft. In 1843, it was determined that the tower had suffered too much decay and needed to be replaced.

The 1844 lighthouse was a cast-iron tower built by the South Boston Iron Company.

The 1881 lighthouse was a cast-iron tower. When Fort Strong was expanded in 1900 it became necessary to move or replace the light to another location on the island to keep it from any damage from the firing of the guns.

The current 1901 tower was built in a different location as the previous towers. The light was automated in 1929. In 1982, the Coast Guard discontinued the lighthouse. In 1985, the tower was renovated, a solar-powered optic was installed, and the light was lit once more. The lighthouse received a major renovation in the summer of 1998.

Access to the island is prohibited. The lighthouse can be seen by boat.

A 'flashing' light is a light in which the total duration of light in a period is shorter than the total duration of darkness and the appearances of light (flashes) are usually of equal duration. So in the 2.5 second period, the light is on for less than 1.25 then off for more than 1.25.

Long Island Head Light was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on June 15, 1987, reference number 87001481.

Photo by: Jim Tracy
Source: USBeacons
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