Lighthouse Facts

Some interesting facts about lighthouses

  • First Lighthouse – Boston, MA (1716)
  • Oldest Lighthouse in Service – Sandy Hook, NJ (1764)
  • Newest Shoreside Lighthouse – Charleston, SC (1962)
  • Tallest Lighthouse – Cape Hatteras, NC (191 ft)
  • Highest Lighthouse (above sea level) – Cape Mendocino, CA (515 ft)
  • First American-built West Coast Lighthouse – Alcatraz Lighthouse (1854)
  • First lighthouse to use electricity – Statue of Liberty (1886)
  • First Great Lakes lighthouses – Buffalo, NY & Erie, PA (1818)
  • Most expensive lighthouse (adjusted cost) – St. GeorgeĀ¹s Reef, CA (1891)Cape Henlopen Lighthouse
  • In the early nineteenth-century, Philadelphia was a central port of commerce in the New World and a vital harbor for trade. However, the entrance to Delaware Bay was particularly hazardous to vessels. To help guide mariners away from dangerous shoals, the Cape Henlopen lighthouse was completed in 1767 with money raised from a series of lotteries.

    The 93-foot tall octagonal tower stood on a shifting, sandy dune and from the beginning caused concern for the structures.

    When first built, Cape Henlopen was a mile from the shoreline. By 1915 it was within 150′ of the turning sea. Daring adventurers would pose for a picture beneath the teetering structure. On April 13, 1926, it crumpled and fell onto the beach below.

    This Lighthouse also has the distinction of being the closest lighthouse to our store in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.

Cape Henlopen Lighthouse

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