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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Fenwick Island in Sussex County, Delaware — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Fenwick Island Lighthouse

 
 
Fenwick Island Lighthouse Marker image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, February 9, 2013
1. Fenwick Island Lighthouse Marker
Inscription. On December 29, 1858, the Lighthouse Board issued the following announcement:

“Notice to Mariners
New Light-House
at
Fenwicks Island, Delaware”

Notice is hereby given that the new tower at Fenwicks Island, Delaware, is finished, and that a light will be exhibited therefrom for the first day of August next, and will be kept burning during that night, and every night thereafter, from sunset to sunrise. The tower is built of brick, is 75 feet high and is surmounted by a lantern 10 feet high. The watch room and lantern are painted black, the lower and keeper’s dwelling white. The illuminating apparatus is of the third order of the system of Fresnel and will show a fixed white light varied by a bright flash every two minutes. The focal plane is 86 feet above the level of the sea, and the light should be visible in ordinary states of the atmosphere 15 nautical miles.

The approximate position of the light-house, as deduced from the Coast Survey charts, is –
Latitude,    38° 27’ 00” North
Longitude, 75° 03’ 30” West…”

The lighthouse cost $23,748.96 to build in 1858.

The light was first fueled by whale oil, then kerosene and was magnified by a lens, (Fresnel lens), imported from France.

The
Fenwick Island Lighthouse Marker image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, February 9, 2013
2. Fenwick Island Lighthouse Marker
two houses flanking the lighthouse were the homes of the lighthouse keeper and his assistant.
These are now Privately owned.
 
Location. 38° 27.075′ N, 75° 3.296′ W. Marker is in Fenwick Island, Delaware, in Sussex County. Marker is on Lighthouse Road (146th Street), on the right when traveling west. Touch for map. In front of the Fenwick Island Lighthouse. Marker is in this post office area: Fenwick Island DE 19944, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 6 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. The History of the Lighthouse (here, next to this marker); Transpeninsular Line (here, next to this marker); Mason and Dixon Line-Survey Start (here, next to this marker); a different marker also named The Fenwick Island Lighthouse (a few steps from this marker); Eastern End of Transpeninsular Line Between Maryland and Three Lower Counties of Pennsylvania (about 800 feet away, measured in a direct line in Maryland); Old Sound Methodist Church (approx. 4.8 miles away); Our Community's Role in World War II (third marker) (approx. 5.8 miles away); Our Community's Role in World War II (first marker) (approx. 5.9 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Fenwick Island.
 
Categories. Man-Made FeaturesWaterways & Vessels
 
Keeper's House image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, February 9, 2013
3. Keeper's House
The Light image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, February 9, 2013
4. The Light
Light with Fresnel Lens image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, February 9, 2013
5. Light with Fresnel Lens
Fresnel Lens Diagram image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, February 9, 2013
6. Fresnel Lens Diagram
Notice to Mariners image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, December 28, 2007
7. Notice to Mariners
A framed copy of the 1858 notice hangs inside the Fenwick Island Lighthouse. "Copied from Records on file at the National Archives by Richard B. Carter, January, 1979"
Fenwick Island Light image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, February 9, 2013
8. Fenwick Island Light
An Earlier Version image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, December 28, 2007
9. An Earlier Version
The current marker seems to be the replacement of an earlier marker shown in this 2007 Photo.
An Earlier Version image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, December 28, 2007
10. An Earlier Version
The earlier marker was located to the left of the front gate; The current marker is on the right of the gate.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on February 16, 2013, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. This page has been viewed 369 times since then and 27 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10. submitted on February 16, 2013, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
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