Highlands in Monmouth County, New Jersey — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
The building in front of you is the powerhouse. Inside the large double doors to your right were the engines and dynamos used to produce electrical power to light the lamp for the 1898 south tower Fresnel lens. This brick building, built in 1909, replaced a temporary wooden structure.
The noise from the engines housed inside was incredibly loud. Local residents complained about this and also about the intensity of light coming from the south tower. Blackout panels were installed on the landward side of the south tower, but nothing could be done about the noise.
In 1917, the machinery needed costly repairs. The Light House Board decided not to repair it, but instead replaced the electric lamp with an incandescent oil vapor lamp that was used until 1924 when commercial electrical power became available. The original machinery was removed in 1921, broken up and discarded because it was no longer needed.
Today the powerhouse is used as an exhibit building to display Twin Lights’ famous south tower Fresnel lens.
Erected by NJ Department of Environmental Protection, Division
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Industry & Commerce • Waterways & Vessels. In addition, it is included in the Lighthouses series list. A significant historical year for this entry is 1898.
Location. This marker has been replaced by another marker nearby. It was located near 40° 23.761′ N, 73° 59.139′ W. Marker was in Highlands, New Jersey, in Monmouth County. Marker could be reached from Lighthouse Road. Marker is located at the Twin Lights Historic Site, at the south end of the parking lot. Touch for map. Marker was in this post office area: Highlands NJ 07732, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this location. Twin Lights Mystery Cannon (within shouting distance of this marker); Electric Power Station (within shouting distance of this marker); a different marker also named Powerhouse (within shouting distance of this marker); The Navesink Light Station (within shouting distance of this marker); a different marker also named Navesink Light Station (within shouting distance of this marker); From the Navesink Highlands (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Telegraph and Radar at Twin Lights (about 300 feet away); Spermaceti Cove Life Saving Station (about 300 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Highlands.
More about this marker. The bottom left of the marker contains The Hornsby Akroyd Company Advertisement. “Hornsby Akroyd engines ran on kerosene and were used to turn electric dynamos that powered the south tower beacon. There were two of these engines in this powerhouse. Courtesy of Ray Hooley” Next to this is a copy of a “Letter of Complaint about the South Tower Beacon, July 26, 1898. Courtesy of the National Archives.” The right of the marker features a photograph of “Lighthouse Keeper Murphy Rockett examining the South Tower Fresnel Lens, 1937. At 25,000,000-candle power, this was one of the brightest beacons in the United States. Courtesy of the Twin Lights Historical Society.”
Related marker.another marker that is related to this marker. This marker has been replaced by the linked marker.
Also see . . . Twin Lights Historical Society. Society website homepage (Submitted on April 10, 2021, by Larry Gertner of New York, New York.)
Credits. This page was last revised on October 19, 2022. It was originally submitted on September 23, 2009, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 822 times since then and 33 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on September 23, 2009, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey.