Cape Canaveral Light, Cape Canaveral, Florida
CAPE CANAVERAL LIGHT
Location: ONE MILE FROM ATLANTIC OCEAN SHORE AT CAPE CANAVERAL, FLORIDA NEAR COCOA BEACH
Station Established: 1848
Year Current Tower(s) First Lit: 1868
Foundation Materials: BRICK
Construction Materials: CAST IRON PLATE WITH BRICK LINING
Tower Shape: CONICAL
Markings/Pattern: BLACK AND WHITE BAND, BLACK LANTERN ROOM
Relationship to Other Structure: SEPARATE
Original Lens: FIRST ORDER FRESNEL
- In 1847 a 60-foot brick lighthouse was built near the site of the current light. The light was too short and ineffective as an aid for mariners.
- Construction began on the current tower but had to be halted during the Civil War. It is said that the keeper removed the light apparatus and buried it in his orange grove. Construction resumed at the end of the war and was completed in 1868.
- The new tower was 145 feet tall and contained a 1st Order Fresnel Lens. It is visible for 18 miles.
- Shore erosion was a problem and by the 1880’s the light was just 70 feet from the tower. In 1892, relocation began on the light. It took 18 months to complete.
- In 1960 the light was automated. The lens was removed. It is on display at the Ponce de Leon Lighthouse museum.
- The light is an active aid to navigation but is not open to the public. Ownership of the light has been transferred from the Coast Guard to the United States Air Force.
Researched and written by Melissa Buckler, a Chesapeake Chapter of the U.S. Light House Society volunteer.