Scenic USA - New Jersey

Sea Girt Lighthouse

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Sea Girt Lighthouse -  Sea Girt, New Jersey

Photos by Ben Prepelka
Scenic USA Artist Website

   Long before modern radar and differential global positioning systems, Atlantic mariners piloted their vessels along familiar shorelines and used the stars as guides at night. The long coastline of New Jersey was illuminated with a string of lighthouses by the mid 1800s, making commercial shipping much safer along the eastern seaboard.
   A long stretch of the New Jersey coastline remained dark until the Lighthouse Board recommended construction of a lighthouse about half way from Sandy Hook to Barnegat Inlet. Here, just north of Manasquan Inlet, the site of Wreck Pond was chosen for the new light station. Completed in 1896, the light station incorporated a 44 foot square tower, complete with a fourth-order French lens. Designs followed a vernacular Victorian style, incorporating a two story L-shaped floor plan, and shaded with wrap-around covered porches.
   No longer needed by 1945, the lighthouse was listed for sale in 1956. Without any serious bids, the Borough of Sea Girt purchased the light station for 11,000 dollars. By 1980, the lighthouse was in serious need of repair, prompting quick action by the Sea Girt Lighthouse Citizens Committee. The organization raised funds and took full responsibility for lighthouse upkeep and repairs. One of the last "live-in" light stations on the Atlantic Coast, visitors are treated to extensive tours of every room in the lighthouse. Pre-arranged tours are conducted year-round and the lighthouse is also open to the public from April to late November on Sundays from 2pm to 4pm.

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