Hooper Island Light

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Hooper Island Light
Photograph of Hooper Island Light (USCG)
Hooper Island Light is located in Maryland
Hooper Island Light
Hooper Island Light is located in the United States
Hooper Island Light
Location4 mi west of Middle Hooper Island in the Chesapeake Bay
Coordinates38°15′22.5″N 76°14′59.3″W / 38.256250°N 76.249806°W / 38.256250; -76.249806Coordinates: 38°15′22.5″N 76°14′59.3″W / 38.256250°N 76.249806°W / 38.256250; -76.249806
Year first constructed1902
Year first lit1902
FoundationPneumatic caisson
Tower shaperound "sparkplug" tower
Markings / patternWhite on brown base
Tower height10.5 metre Edit this on Wikidata
Focal height63 feet (19 m)
Original lensfourth-order Fresnel lens
Current lenssolar-powered
Range9 nautical miles (17 km; 10 mi)
CharacteristicFlashing White, 6 seconds
Fog signalHorn, 1 every 30 seconds Operated continuously from Sept. 15 to June 1
Admiralty numberJ2080
ARLHS numberUSA-377
USCG number2-7590

[1] [2]

Heritageplace listed on the National Register of Historic Places Edit this on Wikidata
Hooper Island Light Station
Nearest cityHooperville, Maryland
Arealess than one acre
MPSLight Stations of the United States MPS
NRHP reference No.02001426[4]
Added to NRHPDecember 2, 2002

The Hooper Island Light is a lighthouse in the Chesapeake Bay, west of Middle Hooper Island in Maryland.


The initial request of a light at this site was made in 1897, but construction was delayed until 1901 after the Variety Iron Works Company failed to deliver materials in time. Unlike earlier caisson lights in the bay, the foundation was placed using the pneumatic process, in which the caisson is kept under pressure to expel water, and the interior is excavated to bring the cylinder down to the desired depth.[2]

The tower is taller than other Maryland sparkplug lights because of the provision for a watch room as well as a lantern atop the tower, the only example in the state. A fog bell was originally housed on the lower gallery but was later moved to the watch room level, a backup to the fog horn added in the 1930s. The characteristic was changed several times through the years, with different patterns of flashes and eclipses.[5]

Along with many other Chesapeake Bay lights, automation came in the early 1960s. In 1976 the original fourth-order Fresnel lens was stolen, and it was replaced with a solar-power lamp.[2]

The lighthouse was added to the National Register of Historic Places on December 2, 2002 as Hooper Island Light Station. The structure was officially turned over to the U.S. Lighthouse Society in June 2009, but the light remains active.[1]


  1. ^ a b Light List, Volume II, Atlantic Coast, Shrewsbury River, New Jersey to Little River, South Carolina (PDF). Light List. United States Coast Guard. 2012. p. 72.
  2. ^ a b c "Historic Light Station Information and Photography: Maryland" (PDF). United States Coast Guard Historian's Office.
  3. ^ Rowlett, Russ. "Lighthouses of the United States: Maryland". The Lighthouse Directory. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
  4. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. July 9, 2010.
  5. ^ Ralph E. Eshelman (August 2002). "National Register of Historic Places Registration: Hooper Island Light Station" (PDF). Maryland Historical Trust. Retrieved 2016-03-01.


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