Hereford Inlet Lighthouse

Aug. 27, 2019

Hereford Inlet Lighthouse, Wildwood, New Jersey

Built in 1874.


Station Established: 1849
Year Current Tower(s) First Lit: 1874
Operational? YES
Automated? YES 1964
Deactivated: 1964-1983
Foundation Materials: WOOD PILINGS
Construction Materials: WOOD
Tower Height: 49.5 feet
Tower Shape: SQUARE
Relationship to Other Structure: INTEGRAL
Characteristics: Rotating white light with red sector
Original Lens: FOURTH ORDER, FRESNEL 1874


  • 1872, 10 June:  Congress acted to finance a fourth order light along the New Jersey shoreline.
  • 1873, 7 July:  Humphrey S. Cresse sold the 1.5 acre site to the US government for $150.
  • 1874, 16 April:  The US Army Corps of Engineers completed construction of the lighthouse.
  • 1874, 11 May:  A "Notice to Mariners" announced the operation of the light on the North end of Five Mile Beach.
  • 1913, August:  A severe storm damaged the foundation of the lighthouse.  The lighthouse was moved 150 feet westward where it stands today.
  • 1938, May:  A fire caused extensive damage to the lighthouse.
  • 1963:  The lighthouse property was transferred to the New Jersey Marine Police.
  • 1964:  An automatic light tower was built to replace the lighthouse.
  • 1977, 20 September:  The lighthouse was placed on the National Register of Historical Places after restoration by the city.
  • 1982:  A 20 year no-cost lease to the City of North Wildwood from the Department of Environmental Protection was established.
  • 1983, 1 July:  A portion of the restored lighthouse was used as a tourist information center.
  • 1986, April:  The US Coast Guard relit the lighthouse using the beacon from the automatic light tower.
  • 2002:  The lighthouse is open during the summer for tours.

Researched and written by Diane Hackney.