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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Port Hueneme in Ventura County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
 

Point Hueneme Lighthouse

Hueneme: “Resting Place”

 
 
Point Hueneme Lighthouse Marker image. Click for full size.
By Craig Baker, July 1, 2019
1. Point Hueneme Lighthouse Marker
Inscription.  As early as 1857, the need for a lighthouse at Point Hueneme to mark the eastern Santa Barbara Channel entrance was recognized. In March 1873 Congress appropriated funds for a light station and a 60-acre lighthouse reservation at Point Hueneme. In 1874, Victorian Swiss-Elizabethan style wood frame building (pictured below), combining a two-story residence and three-story light tower, was erected where the harbor entry is now located. In 1882, a fog signal was added and in 1899, the lighting apparatus was replaced with a revolving fourth-order Fresnel lens made in France in 1897 by Barrier and Barnard. (“Order” is a measure of lens size, ranging from first, the largest, to sixth). The French physicist, Augustin Fresnel, designed the lens with a system of crystal prisms that projected light for miles. Fresnel lenses are still used in most operating light houses.

In 1936, shoreline dredging commenced to create the deepwater Port of Hueneme. This forced the original Victorian structure to be moved across the harbor towards Silver Strand Beach. In less than three years, the lighthouse was demolished due to damage and neglect.
Point Hueneme Lighthouse and Marker image. Click for full size.
By Craig Baker, July 1, 2019
2. Point Hueneme Lighthouse and Marker
In 1941 the current concrete “art moderne” building was dedicated reusing the original 1897 Fresnel lens. In 1972, the lighthouse was fully automated and on October 1, 1979, the “Point Hueneme Light Works” was designated as Ventura County Historical Landmark No. 57.

The original 1897 Fresnel lens can still be seen in operation revolving inside the Point Hueneme Lighthouse tower.

Hueneme “Resting Place”

Sailing under the Spanish flag in 1542, Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo, a Portuguese sailor, sighted the present day harbors of San Diego, Santa Barbara, and Monterey. Sailing up the coast from San Pedro, Cabrillo痴 fleet is believed to have landed at Mugu Lagoon on October 10, 1542. Cabrillo named the place El Pueblo de las Canoas (the town of the Canoes) in honor of the large, skillfully crafted ocean canoes constructed by the local seafaring Chumash. When Cabrillo sailed by the small Chumash village near this site at Point Hueneme, he referred to it as Quelqueme, or Welweme, names likely learned from the Chumash at Mugu Lagoon. The phonetic spelling of Wene知u was later Anglicized to Wyneme in 1869 and finally to Hueneme in 1872.

The name, Hueneme or Wene知u, has been translated as “resting place” or possibly “half-way place” derived from the habit of the Chumash
Marker and Pacific Ocean image. Click for full size.
By Craig Baker, July 1, 2019
3. Marker and Pacific Ocean
who use this area as a mid point between Mugu Lagoon and the mouth of the Santa Clara River. This site is also thought to have been advantageous as a channel crossing point being the nearest mainland position to Anacapa Island and the eastern tip of Santa Cruz Island.
 
Erected by City of Port Hueneme. (Marker Number 57.)
 
Location. 34° 8.698′ N, 119° 12.614′ W. Marker is in Port Hueneme, California, in Ventura County. Marker can be reached from Surfside Drive 0.6 miles west of Market Street, on the left when traveling west. Walk a half mile west from the intersection of Surfside Drive and Market Street. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Port Hueneme CA 93041, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 7 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. "La Jenelle" (approx. 0.4 miles away); Bank of Hueneme (approx. 0.7 miles away); Alaska Flight 261 Memorial (approx. 1.1 miles away); Hueneme Slough (approx. 1.1 miles away); Olive (approx. 1.9 miles away); Petre Ranch House (approx. 3.9 miles away); The Oxnard Pagoda (approx. 4 miles away); F-14 Tomcat (approx. 6.4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Port Hueneme.
 
Regarding Point Hueneme Lighthouse. The lighthouse is open for tours monthly on the third Saturday from 10-3.
 
Categories.
Marker viewed from the lighthouse image. Click for full size.
By Craig Baker, July 20, 2019
4. Marker viewed from the lighthouse
ExplorationMan-Made FeaturesNative AmericansWaterways & Vessels
 
Point Hueneme Lighthouse image. Click for full size.
By Craig Baker, July 1, 2019
5. Point Hueneme Lighthouse
Fresnel Lens image. Click for full size.
By Craig Baker, July 20, 2019
6. Fresnel Lens
No longer in use, now on display in the lighthouse.
New Light in Lighthouse image. Click for full size.
By Craig Baker, July 20, 2019
7. New Light in Lighthouse
Marker Detail: Original Lighthouse image. Click for full size.
By Craig Baker, July 1, 2019
8. Marker Detail: Original Lighthouse
<i>Point Hueneme Lighthouse</i> image. Click for full size.
C.C. Pierce and Co. (courtesy of the Los Angeles Public Library)
9. Point Hueneme Lighthouse
 

More. Search the internet for Point Hueneme Lighthouse.
 
Credits. This page was last revised on August 2, 2019. This page originally submitted on July 4, 2019, by Craig Baker of Sylmar, California. This page has been viewed 53 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on July 4, 2019, by Craig Baker of Sylmar, California.   4. submitted on July 21, 2019, by Craig Baker of Sylmar, California.   5. submitted on July 4, 2019, by Craig Baker of Sylmar, California.   6, 7. submitted on July 21, 2019, by Craig Baker of Sylmar, California.   8. submitted on July 4, 2019, by Craig Baker of Sylmar, California.   9. submitted on July 10, 2019. • Andrew Ruppenstein was the editor who published this page.
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