Fort Hancock State Park in Monmouth County, New Jersey — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Sandy Hook Light
This light was completed in 1764 and is the oldest continuously operating lighthouse in the United States. New York merchants petitioned their assembly to raise money for the light by lotteries and tonnage taxes on ships entering New York. In 1739 the Federal Government formed the U.S. Lighthouse Service, later incorporated into the U.S. Coast Guard to operate this light and all other aids to navigation in U.S. Waters. Sandy Hook Light is 29 feet in diameter at the base and is 85 feet above the ground and can be seen for 19 miles. Sandy Hook Light is a reminder of our rich maritime history and is still and important aid to navigation at the entrance to New York Harbor.
has been designated a
Under the provisions of the
Historic Sites Act of August 21, 1935
this site possesses exceptional value
in commemorating or illustrating
the history of the United States
U.S. Department of the Interior
National Park Service
Erected 1976 by U.S. Coast Guard.
Marker series. This marker is included in the National Historic Landmarks marker series.
Location. Touch for map. Marker is located on the side of the Sandy Hook Light (Lighthouse) on Fort Hancock State Park, NJ. Nearest city is Atlantic Highlands, NJ. Marker is at or near this postal address: Number 1 Lighthouse Road, Highlands NJ 07732, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Keeping the Light (a few steps from this marker); Lights Out! (within shouting distance of this marker); Fire House Number 2 (within shouting distance of this marker); Mortar Battery (within shouting distance of this marker); Fill’er Up! (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Post Exchange (about 300 feet away); Lighting the Way (about 300 feet away); Chow Time! (about 400 feet away).
1. Oldest standing light tower in the U.S.
The tall, white lighthouse at Sandy Hook is the oldest standing light tower in the United States. Since 1764, the lighthouse's unfailing beam has befriended innumerable vessels as they have passed in or out of New York's great harbor. Because of the risks to shipping in the
The original tower of the Sandy Hook Light still stands. It is octagonal, with massive masonry walls that are seven feet thick at the base. The tower rises eighty-five feet above the ground and eighty-eight feet above the water. It is interesting to note that, when built, the lighthouse stood about five hundred feet from the northern end of Sandy Hook, now, due to growth caused by littoral drift, it is almost one and half miles inland from the tip. Sandy Hook Lighthouse is part of the Sandy Hook Unit of Gateway National Recreation Area, part of the National Parks of New York Harbor. And the light is listed as a National Landmark, National Maritime Landmark and on the National Registry of Historic Places. The Sandy Hook Lighthouse was
— Submitted February 2, 2008, by Kevin W. of Stafford, Virginia.
Additional keywords. Lighthouse
Categories. • Colonial Era • Industry & Commerce • Landmarks • Military • Notable Buildings • Waterways & Vessels •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on February 2, 2008, by R. C. of Shrewsbury, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 1,131 times since then and 12 times this year. Photos: 1. submitted on February 2, 2008, by R. C. of Shrewsbury, New Jersey. 2, 3. submitted on September 20, 2009, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. 4, 5. submitted on February 2, 2008, by R. C. of Shrewsbury, New Jersey. 6. submitted on February 4, 2008, by R. C. of Shrewsbury, New Jersey. 7. submitted on February 2, 2008, by R. C. of Shrewsbury, New Jersey. • Kevin W. was the editor who published this page.