Cape Blanco Light

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Cape Blanco Light
Cape Blanco Lighthouse OR.jpg
Cape Blanco Light
Cape Blanco Light is located in Oregon
Cape Blanco Light
Coordinates42°50′12″N 124°33′48″W / 42.83667°N 124.56333°W / 42.83667; -124.56333Coordinates: 42°50′12″N 124°33′48″W / 42.83667°N 124.56333°W / 42.83667; -124.56333[1]
Year first constructed1870
Year first litDecember 20, 1870
Tower shapeConical attached to workroom
Markings / patternWhite tower, green lantern, red dome
Tower height59 feet (18 m)
Focal height256 feet (78 m)
Original lensFirst order Fresnel (moved to Tongue Point in Astoria)
Current lensSecond order Fresnel (1936)
Range23 nautical miles (43 km; 26 mi)
CharacteristicFlash White 20 Seconds
Heritageplace listed on the National Register of Historic Places Edit this on Wikidata
Cape Blanco Lighthouse
Nearest citySixes, Oregon
Area1.1 acres (0.45 ha)
Built byUS Army Corps of Engineers; Williamson, Lt. R.A.
MPSLighthouse Stations of Oregon MPS
NRHP reference #73002339[2]
Added to NRHPApril 21, 1993

Cape Blanco Light is a lighthouse located on Cape Blanco, Oregon, United States in Cape Blanco State Park.

Construction of the light[edit]

The lighthouse in 1871

In a deed recorded in 1867, John D. and Mary West sold the United States a 47.3-acre (19.1 ha) tract of land. The Light-House board determined that the offshore reef and islands at Cape Blanco were dangerous to maritime commerce; therefore, a lighthouse was authorized for construction.

Over the next three years, the lighthouse was constructed under the direction of Lt. Col. Robert Stockton Williamson. Supplies were ordered and shipped to the cape. Bricks were deemed cheaper if made onsite, so a brickmaker was located and a deal was struck with Rancher Patrick Hughes for access to the required materials.


Many keepers followed Burnap, the most notable were James Langlois and James Hughes who served as keepers for 42 and 38 years respectively. James Langlois raised a large family. James Hughes, son of neighboring rancher Patrick Hughes, raised two girls.

For many years, Keeper Langlois requested additional housing for the station. With his large family, the Hughes family, and the other families that came and went, the duplex was just too crowded. His requests went unanswered until 1909 when Head Keepers' quarters were constructed.

Cape Blanco Lighthouse and Dwelling, 1943

James Hughes found his own solution before the government responded. James owned land across the Sixes River from his father and quickly constructed a home for his family, moving from the lighthouse about the same time they finished additional lighthouse quarters. James continued to work at the lighthouse, commuting to assume his duties.

A lamp at the Cape Blanco Light, 2003

Life was difficult on the cape, which experiences constant high winds during the spring and summer and severe storms in winter. The weather kept the keepers busy with continual repairs and painting. Despite the hardship, both Langlois and Hughes stayed there until retirement.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Cape Blanco Lighthouse". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. February 15, 2011. Retrieved November 22, 2014.
  2. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. July 9, 2010.

External links[edit]