Matinicus Rock Lighthouse, Matinicus Rock, Knox County, Maine
Established in 1827.
MATINICUS ROCK LIGHT (TWIN TOWERS)
6 MILES SOUTH OF MATINICUS ISLAND
Station Established: 1827
Year Current Tower(s) First Lit: 1857
Automated? YES 1983
Foundation Materials: NATURAL/EMPLACED
Construction Materials: GRANITE BLOCKS
Tower Shape: CYLINDRICAL
Relationship to Other Structure: ATTACHED
Original Lens: THIRD ORDER, FRESNEL 1857
- Lighthouse is best known for the heroics of Abbie Burgess who, as a teenager, saved her mother and younger sisters during a storm by moving them into the lighthouse. While her father was kept away by the storm, she tended the light and kept it burning for the duration.
- 1827 – Twin wooden towers built.
- 1846 – Wooden towers replaced by granite towers and granite keeper’s house built.
- 1855 – Fog bell installed.
- 1856 – Keeper’s house washed away during storm, family saved by Abbie Burgess.
- 1857 – The towers were refurbished and fitted with third order Fresnel Lenses.
- 1869 – Daboll trumpet replaced fog bell.
- 1883 – North tower discontinued, Daboll trumpet fog signal swept off the rocks by waves.
- 1888 – North light tower was re-established.
- 1924 – North light extinguished for good. Government changed the station to a single tower.
- 1950 – Stations outbuildings and keeper’s house removed following a violent storm.
- 1983 – Lighthouse automated.
- John A. Shaw (1827-1831)
- Phineas Spear (1831-1834)
- Abner Knowles (c. 1836)
- Samuel Abbott (1839-184?)
- William Young (184?-1853)
- Samuel Burgess (1853-1861)
- John H. Grant (1861-1890)
- William G. Grant (first assistant keeper, then keeper 1875-1900)
- Isaac Grant (first assistant keeper, 1861-1875)
- Abbie Burgess Grant (second assistant keeper, 1861-1875)
- John F. Grant (second assistant keeper, 1876-1887)
- Knott C. Perry (third assistant keeper, 1877-1881)
- Jacob T. Abbott (third assistant keeper, 1881-1886)
- Jarvis H. Grant (second assistant keeper, 1887-1888)
- William F. Stanley (second assistant keeper, 1888-1891)
- Thad Wallace (third assistant keeper, 1888-1891)
- Aldiverd Norton (third assistant keeper, 1890-1897)
- Llewell Norwood (third assistant keeper, 1891-1895)
- Fred Hodgkins (third assistant keeper, 1892)
- George A. Lewis (third assistant keeper, 1892-1898)
- James E. Hall (third assistant keeper, later first assistant, then keeper, 1896-1908)
- Merton Tolman (third assistant keeper, later keeper, 1900-1911)
- Charles Burgess (third assistant keeper, later second assistant, then first assistant, 1897-1900)
- Elmer Holbrook (third assistant keeper, later second assistant keeper, 1898-1908)
- Charles Dyer, third assistant keeper, later second assistant, then first assistant, then keeper (1905-1916)
- Harold Hutchins, third assistant keeper, later second assistant, then first assistant (1909-1912)
- Arthur Mitchell, third assistant keeper, then second assistant, then keeper (1912-1919)
- George Studley, third assistant keeper (1912)
- J. H. Upton, second assistant keeper (1912)
- Arthur J. Beal (second assistant, then first assistant 1919-1929)
- Frank O. Hilt (1919-c.1933)
- Alvah Robinson (assistant ?-1935, keeper 1935-1936)
- R. W. Powers (c. 1933)
- Roscoe Fletcher (1936-1945)
Researched and written by Marie Vincent, a volunteer through the Chesapeake Chapter of the U.S. Lighthouse Society.