The Cuckolds Light
|Location||Boothbay Harbor, Maine|
|Year first constructed||1892|
|Year first lit||1907 (current structure)|
|Tower shape||Octagonal Tower on Dwelling|
|Markings / pattern||White|
|Focal height||59 feet (18 m)|
|Original lens||4th order Fresnel lens|
|Range||12 nautical miles (22 km; 14 mi)|
|Characteristic||Fl (2) W 6s|
|Fog signal||HORN: 1 every 15s|
Cuckolds Light Station
|Nearest city||Southport, Maine|
|Area||7 acres (2.8 ha)|
|MPS||Light Stations of the United States MPS|
|NRHP reference #||02001413|
|Added to NRHP||December 2, 2002|
|Heritage||place listed on the National Register of Historic Places|
The Cuckolds Light, known as the Cuckolds Island Fog Signal and Light Station or just Cuckolds Light Station, is a lighthouse located on the eastern pair of islets known as the "Cuckolds" in Lincoln County, Maine. The islets are southeast and in sight of Cape Island, that is just off the southern tip of Cape Newagen on Southport Island, south of Booth Bay, that leads to Boothbay Harbor, Maine.
The fog station was first established as a daymark on November 16, 1892, for marking the islets and Collector ledge replacing a 57-foot-tall wooden tripod, In 1893 a bell was installed and a light was added in 1907. The keepers house was demolished following the 1974 decommission but was rebuilt from 2010 to 2014, along with the wharf, and the lighthouse restored.
The United States Congress appropriated funding through the Lighthouse commission and authorized the building of the lighthouse August 30, 1890, but the $25,000 funding was not provided until March 3, 1891. The station commenced operation in 1892 with duplicated four horsepower coal-fired engines, compressors, and tanks, along with hot air first-order Daboll trumpets. Material for construction included 105 yards of granite, 60,000 bricks, 430 casks of cement, 100 tons of sand, 200 tons of broken stone and pebbles, 70,000 feet of lumber, and included 3,400 pounds of wrought-iron work. The granite was used for the foundation and the lighthouse was attached to this for stability. A radio transmitter was installed in 1956.
In 1907 a Fourth-order Fresnel lens was installed. The early coal fired system used approximately seven tons of coal to run around 1000 hours and when converted to oil ran 423 hours on 195 gallons of oil. The original 24,000 candlepower, provided by an incandescent oil vapor lamp, was increased to 30,000 candlepower powered by an electric lamp and the fourth-order lens, and by 1971 to 500,000 candlepower.
Deactivation and transfer
The lighthouse was decommissioned in 1974 and listed as United States Coast Guard surplus property. The non-profit Cuckolds Island Fog Signal and Light Station Council was formed and submitted a 542-page proposal that was accepted and the deed transferred on May 8, 2006.
In June 2014 the Inn at Cuckolds Lighthouse opened, being rebuilt as well as the lighthouse restored, and is advertised as a luxurious retreat providing "pampered luxury" for upward of $3000 a weekend. Tours will be held and transportation to the island will be provided in a restored United States Navy whaleboat.
The Fresnel lens, removed when the light was decommissioned, is housed at the Maine Lighthouse Museum in Rockland. The lighthouse is currently equipped with a VRB-25 and remains an active aid to navigation, maintained by the Coast Guard.
- "Historic Light Station Information and Photography: Maine". United States Coast Guard Historian's Office. 2009-08-05.
- United States Coast Guard (2009). Light List, Volume I, Atlantic Coast, St. Croix River, Maine to Shrewsbury River, New Jersey. p. 48.
- Rowlett, Russ (2009-10-03). "Lighthouses of the United States: Southern Maine". The Lighthouse Directory. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
- National Park Service (2009-03-13). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service.
- Griffes, Peter L. (2003). "Atlantic Boating Almanacs: Maine To Cape Cod, Ma". ProStar Publications. pp. 272 (volume 1). Retrieved July 29, 2015.
- "Cuckolds, ME". 2015. Retrieved July 29, 2015.
- "Cuckolds Light Station, 1907". US Coast Guard. 2014. Retrieved July 29, 2015.
- Prepelka, Benjamin (2008). "Scenic USA-Maine". Retrieved July 29, 2015.
- Coolidge, Carrie (2015). "The Inn at Cuckolds Lighthouse in Southport, Maine Opens its Doors". PubExchange. Retrieved July 29, 2015.