In my post about Hull, Ma and Nantasket Beach I included pictures of Boston Light. I decided to do a little research to see if I could get some more information about the lighthouse. Even in the bright sun I was able to see that the light was working.
The island that is home to Boston Light is known as Little Brewster Island and is located in outer Boston Harbor. The first lighthouse built on the island was built in 1716 and was the first lighthouse to be built in what is now the United States. Boston is just full of “firsts”!
This lighthouse is not the original. This one dates back to 1783 and it’s the 2nd oldest working lighthouse in the US. (Sandyhook Lighthouse in NJ is the oldest). This is also the only lighthouse to be actively staffed by the Coast Guard.
In 1964 Boston Light became a National Historic Landmark.
The first lighthouse keeper drowned along with his wife and daughter while returning to the island in 1718.
During the American Revolution the lighthouse was held by the British. American forces attacked and burned the original structure not once but twice. When the British withdrew in 1776 they finished it off by blowing up the structure which completely demolished it.
The lighthouse was rebuilt in 1783 to its original height of 75 ft. In 1859 it was raised to its present height of 89 ft.
The light was automated in 1998 but is still staffed by a resident civilian keeper and volunteer watchstanders from the Coast Guard auxiliary. It’s light flashes white every 10 seconds and can be seen for a distance of 27 nautical miles.
A tour offered of the Boston Harbor Islands includes a stop a Little Brewster to visit Boston Light. You will also view Long Island Light and Graves light.
I think that tour will go on my “must-do” list for a summer excursion!