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Absecon Lighthouse

Nov. 12, 2019
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Absecon Lighthouse, Atlantic City, New Jersey

ABSECON LIGHT

ATLANTIC CITY (ORIGINALLY ABSECON BEACH)
Station Established: 1855
Year Current Tower(s) First Lit: 1857; Deactivated 1933
Operational: No
Automated: N/A
Foundation Materials: GRANITE BLOCKS
Construction Materials: BRICK/IRON
Tower Shape: CONICAL ATTACHED TO KEEPERS
Markings/Pattern: YELLOW, BLACK, YELLOW
Height:    171 feet; Height of focal plane: 167 feet
Characteristics:    Fixed White
Relationship to Other Structure: ATTACHED
Original Lens: FIRST ORDER, FRESNEL/OIL LAMP 1857
Foghorn:    None

Historical Information:

  • 1846: A resolution by the New Jersey legislature called for building of a lighthouse. The Federal Government ignored the resolution.
  • 1855: Lt. George Meade was the tower’s architect. The lighthouse was completed in late 1856 under direction of another engineer Captain W.F. Fraynolds. Daniel Scull was the first lighthouse keeper to use the 228 cast iron steps to the top of Absecon Light.
  • 1870s: A battle with the sea began soon after the lighthouse was activated. By the 1870s erosion had reached the station.
  • 1876-1878: Protective jetties were built. Eventually there were seven built at 150’ intervals. There was some improvement and eventually deep-water jetties were built. These really did the trick of stabilizing the sand and the low water line returned to the 1854 level.
  • 1933: Eventually the lights of the fast growing Atlantic City made the Absecon light useless and it was deactivated in 1933.

Historical information was researched and written by Diane Hackney.