- I worked as a tour guide for two summers at the Umpqua River Lighthouse in Oregon. This opportunity enabled me to learn more about this lighthouse than any of the others I've seen. Although I have personally visited 302 lighthouses in the United States and three Provinces in Canada, the Umpqua River Lighthouse has special meaning for me. This is where I was inspired to write my book titled, "The Wickie."
Check out my book,"THE WICKIE." - - - - -. SEE THE COVER BELOW.
This 1860's story about the lighthouse keepers and their families at the Umpqua River Lighthouse will warm your heart. Discover the challenges they met but never expected, and their determination to maintain navigational aid to mariners on the Oregon coast.
To order your signed copy of "The Wickie", send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. The Book is $15 plus tax and shipping.
06 March 2014
By the 1840's, mariners had begun complaining that the harbor light was too weak, so officials decided to elevate the tower by adding ten feet. Complaints continued and in 1852 another twelve feet were added. However, even the extra height wasn't enough for mariners to differentiate between the lighthouse beacon and those lights of the nearby city. So, in 1854 a larger lantern and a fourth-order Fresnel lens were added to the tower. By the 1860's, erosion around the base of the lighthouse was a great concern.
In 1872, the Lighthouse Board funded a new light station for construction 600 yards to the southwest of the old one. Their action resulted in this 165-foot brick tower painted with spiraling black and white bands. It is the only spiral banded FL lighthouse. This lighthouse was equipped with a first-order Fresnel lens and six flights of stairs with frequent landings. Construction was completed in 1874.
After the light was automated in 1955, the federal government sold the station grounds to St. Johns County. The Junior Service League of St. Augustine later leased the property. In 1980 they began a sweeping restoration of the entire site, which resulted in it being returned to exceptional condition. At the time of my visit here in 2001, the original first-order Fresnel lens still functioned and was active. Although the frequent landings in the stairway make the 165-foot tower a less tiring climb to the lookout, it is well worth it for the sweeping view it affords of "America's Oldest City."
27 February 2014
In 1974 the Hillsboro Inlet Lighthouse was automated, and the remaining keepers' quarters were later converted to vacation retreats for senior military personnel. In 1999, due to requests from local civic groups, the Coast Guard reversed a previous decision to have the Fresnel lens removed and placed in a museum. There was a historic relighting of the original second-order Fresnel lens. If you click on the picture, the lens can be better seen and appreciated.
At the time of my visit here in 2001, this was an active light.
20 February 2014
The lighthouse's former oil storage building showcases a small museum which tells of the station's long career. Extensive renovation of the lighthouse was completed in 1999. At the time of my visit here in 2001, the Coast Guard continued to operate the Jupiter Inlet beacon, although the Florida History Center and Museum managed and cared for the rest of the station. The lighthouse was open to the public.
13 February 2014
The light was automated in 1972, and then in 1983 the Fresnel lens removed from active service and replaced by a beacon type light. The Fresnel lens was placed on permanent display at the U.S. Coast Guard's National Aids to Navigation School in Yorktown, VA.
At the time of my visit here in 2001, this was an active light. I took this picture using a 500mm lens with 2X coupler on the camera with tripod.