Sandy Hook Light
|Location||Sandy Hook, New Jersey|
|Year first constructed||June 11, 1764|
|Height||103 feet (31 m)|
|Original lens||3rd order Fresnel lens|
|Range||19 nautical miles (35 km; 22 mi)|
|Characteristic||Fixed white lighted throughout 24 hours|
Sandy Hook Light
|Architectural style||No Style Listed|
|Governing body||U.S. Coast Guard|
|NRHP Reference #||66000468|
|Added to NRHP||October 15, 1966|
|Designated NHL||January 29, 1964|
|Designated NJRHP||May 27, 1971|
The Sandy Hook Lighthouse, located about one and a half statute miles (2.4 km) inland from the tip of Sandy Hook, New Jersey, is the oldest working lighthouse in the United States. It was designed and built on June 11, 1764 by Isaac Conro. At that time, it stood only 500 feet (150 m) from the tip of Sandy Hook; however, today, due to growth caused by littoral drift, it is almost one and a half miles (2.4 km) inland from the tip.
The light was built to aid mariners entering the southern end of the New York Harbor. It was originally called New York Lighthouse because it was funded through a New York Assembly lottery and a tax on all ships entering the Port of New York. The lighthouse has endured an attempt to destroy it as an aid to British navigation by Benjamin Tupper, and a subsequent occupancy of British soldiers during the Revolutionary War.
Almost two years after the State of New York ratified the U.S. Constitution, the lighthouse was transferred to federal authority. George Washington wrote to the Senate on April 5, 1790, "I have directed my private secretary to lay before you copies of three acts of the legislature of New York ... An act for vesting in the United States of America the light-house and the lands thereunto belonging at Sandy Hook". The lighthouse is located on the grounds of Fort Hancock.
In 1990, the U.S. Postal Service issued a 25 cent stamp featuring the Sandy Hook Lighthouse.
Sandy Hook Lighthouse, which was restored in spring 2000, is part of the Sandy Hook Unit of Gateway National Recreation Area administered by the National Park Service. Seven days a week, National Park Service Park Rangers offer free tours every half hour from 1:00 p.m. until 4:30 p.m.
In popular culture
- On September 18, 2009 the Sandy Hook Light was filmed as a fictional backdrop for final episode of the longest running soap opera Guiding Light.
- List of the oldest buildings in New Jersey
- Geography of New York-New Jersey Harbor Estuary
- Raritan Bayshore
- "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2008-04-15.
- "New Jersey and National Registers of Historic Places - Monmouth County". New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection - Historic Preservation Office. March 1, 2011. Retrieved April 26, 2011.
- "Sandy Hook Light". National Historic Landmark summary listing. National Park Service. Retrieved 2008-06-27.
- "Oldest Lighthouse in the United States". July 12, 2007.
- Sandy Hook Lighthouse, New Jersey at Lighthousefriends.com
- A Compilation of the Messages and Papers of the Presidents. Bureau of National Literature, Inc. Vol.1, p.67
- "Stamp Series". United States Postal Service. Retrieved Sep 2, 2013.
- Sandy Hook Lighthouse at American Byways
- New Jersey Lighthouse Society Home Page: Sandy Hook Lighthouse
- Sandy Hook Lighthouse from Lighthousefriends.com