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Jamestown in Newport County, Rhode Island — The American Northeast (New England)
 

The Assistant Keeper's House

 
 
The Assistant Keeper's House Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, July 29, 2015
1. The Assistant Keeper's House Marker
Inscription.
The first assistant keeper at Beavertail Light was hired about 1859. It appears that the early assistant keepers shared part of the keeper's quarters or lived in one of the outbuildings on site.

In 1898, the U.S. Lighthouse Board added this residence at Beavertail for the assistant keeper and family. The assistant keeper's house was smaller and oriented 90 degrees from the keeper's house. This gave an unobstructed view of the sea from both floors.

The Lighthouse Board not only took care of the keeper's and assistant keeper's physical needs, but their intellectual needs as well. The Board circulated portable libraries of 50 volumes they felt were a "proper admixture of historical, scientific, poetical, and good novels, together with a Bible."

In 1969, Beavertail's assistant keeper was George Light. He became well known for answering the phone: "Beavertail Light, Light speaking."

The building's use as a residence was discontinued when the light was automated in 1972. On June 25, 1989, the Rhode Island Parks Association opened a museum in the building. In 1993 the Beavertail Lighthouse Museum Association was formed to operate the museum.

You were up before five o'clock. When day light came you extinguished the light, trimmed the wick, got everything ready for the next night,
The Assistant Keeper's House Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, July 29, 2015
2. The Assistant Keeper's House Marker
Close-up view, that is displayed on the marker, of an undated photograph showing a keeper, assistant keeper and their wives at a holiday dinner.
took care of the tower, polished the lens, put the cover on, then you went about your duties of painting, maintaining, and general chores ... Toward evening, you'd just reverse what you did in the morning.

Charles Homan, grandson of a Prudence Island Light Keeper
 
Erected by Beavertail Lighthouse Museum Association.
 
Location. 41° 26.965′ N, 71° 23.979′ W. Marker is in Jamestown, Rhode Island, in Newport County. Marker is on Beavertail Road south of Clarkes Village Road, on the left when traveling south. Touch for map. This marker is located in the Beavertail State Park, affixed to the outside wall, beside the front entrance door, on the southwest corner of the existing lighthouse complex. Marker is in this post office area: Jamestown RI 02835, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The West Passage to Narragansett Bay (here, next to this marker); Whale Rock Lighthouse (here, next to this marker); History of the Beavertail Light Station (a few steps from this marker); The Granite Light Tower (a few steps from this marker); Fog Signal Building (a few steps from this marker);
The Assistant Keeper's House Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, July 29, 2015
3. The Assistant Keeper's House Marker
Close-up view, that is displayed on the marker, of a photograph showing that one of the daily tasks of being a lighthouse keeper included the daily tasks of cleaning the huge glass Fresnel lens and, prior to electrification, trimming and replacing wicks.
The Keeper's House (within shouting distance of this marker); Oil Storage Building (within shouting distance of this marker); The 1749 Foundation (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Jamestown.
 
Also see . . .  Beavertail Lighthouse Museum Association. This is a link to information provided by the Beavertail Lighthouse Museum Association. (Submitted on September 14, 2015, by Dale K. Benington of Toledo, Ohio.) 
 
Categories. Industry & CommerceWaterways & Vessels
 
The Assistant Keeper's House Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, July 29, 2015
4. The Assistant Keeper's House Marker
View of the marker affixed to the outside wall, next to the front southwestern entrance doorway.
The Assistant Keeper's House Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, July 29, 2015
5. The Assistant Keeper's House Marker
View of the marker affixed to the outside southern front wall of lighthouse complex, next to the southwestern entrance doorway.
Beavertail Lighthouse as it Appears in 2015 image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, July 29, 2015
6. Beavertail Lighthouse as it Appears in 2015
View, looking south, of the Beavertail Lighthouse complex.
Beavertail Lighthouse as it Appears in 2015 image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, July 29, 2015
7. Beavertail Lighthouse as it Appears in 2015
View, looking north, of the Beavertail Lighthouse complex. The assistant keeper's house is seen on the far left of the picture.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on September 14, 2015, by Dale K. Benington of Toledo, Ohio. This page has been viewed 211 times since then and 59 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7. submitted on September 14, 2015, by Dale K. Benington of Toledo, Ohio.
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