Egg Rock Lighthouse, Nahant Bay, North of Boston Harbor, near Nahant, Massachusetts
EGG ROCK LIGHT
Location: NAHANT BAY, NORTH OF BOSTON HARBOR, NEAR NAHANT, MASSACHUSETTS
Station Established: 1856
Year Current Tower(s) First Lit: 1897
Foundation Materials: UNKNOWN
Construction Materials: BRICK TOWER
Tower Shape: SQUARE
Relationship to Other Structure: INTEGRAL
Original Lens: FIFTH ORDER FRESNEL
* Egg Rock is a three acre island rising 80 feet out of the ocean less than a mile northeast of the town Nahant, Massachusetts. It is said the island resembles a gray whale.
* Congress approved $5,000 for a lighthouse on Egg Rock in 1850 after a schooner went down losing five lives. Unfortunately, the funds were delayed and had to be reappropriated.
* The Egg Rock Light was built in 1856 and consisted of a lantern atop a stone dwelling. The stone was cut from the island.
* The fifth order lens shown a fixed white light and was first lit on September 15, 1856. In reaction to the wreck of the schooner Shark the light was changed to red. The captain confused Egg Rock Light with Long Island Head Light in Boston Harbor.
* In 1897 the lighthouse was rebuilt after a fire destroyed the original dwelling. A square, stone tower was attached to a dwelling.
* During World War I the light was dimmed because of fears that enemy submarines were in the area.
* The light was automated in 1919 when a gas operated beacon was placed in the light. The light was discontinued in 1922.
* The lighthouse was sold for $160 with the clause that the new owner had to remove the light from the island. The house was separated from the tower. Crews were slowly moving the house down the side of the island when a cable snapped and the house slid into the ocean. The tower was destroyed in 1927.
* The island is a now a bird sanctuary.
Researched and written by Melissa Buckler, a volunteer through the Chesapeake Chapter of the U.S. Lighthouse Society.