09 March 2009

Crooked River of the Florida variety

The Crooked River Lighthouse, just west of Carabelle, Florida, has seen many mariners safely home for the 100 years it was lit and used. It was built in 1895 to replace one on Dog Island that was destroyed in a hurricane in 1873. Authorities decided it would be better to have a lighthouse on the secure mainland rther than the exposed Dog Island. After construction delays, the Crooked River Lighthouse, flanked by two identical keeper's houses was completed. The twin houses, one for the keeper and the other for the assistant keeper were sold in 1964 and moved from the site. A fire destroyed one of the houses and the other remains in private ownership.

Electricity came to the lighthouse in 1933 and it became automated in 1952. The lens was built in 1894 by Henri LaPaute in Paris France. The lens currently is on display at the US Coast Guard District 8 headquarters in New Orleans. The lighthouse was decommissioned in 1995.
In 1999, the lighthouse belonged to the US Coast Guard, but was inoperable and deemed surplus property. The Carrabelle Lighthouse Association was formed and in August 2001 the deed was transferred to the city of Carrabelle. The following February, the CLA reached an agreement with the city to care for and restore the lighthouse.
On December 8, 2007, with the restoration of the light complete, the park was opened to the public and the Coast Guard recommisioned the light as a private aid to navigation.
Tower Height: 103 feet
Construction: cast iron skeletal tower with cement foundation
Number of steps: 138
Original light apparatus: 4th order open bivalve revolving lens (Henry Lepaute 1894)
Modern light apparatus: 4th order open bivalve with 190mm rotating lantern
Light: two-group flashing white, flashes every twelve and a half seconds
Currently the CLA and the city of Carrabelle are in the process of building a replica of the Light Keeper's house to be located in the park to serve as a museum. When completed the museum, lighthouse, and recreational conservation site will be open to the public.
History and information from park brochure at the site.

This is a playground that was not here in 2003. I sure wish I had a pirate ship when I was growing up!!

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