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Historical Materials

Historical Materials  »  Flags, Lighthouses, & Navigation Aids  »  Northeast Harbor, Maine – Bear Island Lighthouse

Northeast Harbor, Maine – Bear Island Lighthouse

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The Bear Island Lighthouse is situated at the entrance to Somes Sound on Bear Island, about 1,200 feet from Northeast Harbor, Maine. Construction began on the first Bear Island Lighthouse starting in May of 1838, and was first opened in 1839. Engineer, I.W.P Lewis, found the wooden lighthouse to be "weak and defective" in his 1843 inspection report, but the Bear Island Lighthouse wasn't rebuilt until 1854 after a large fire in 1852 destroyed parts of the original structure. During the remodeling, a round brick tower was added to the structure, but it's thought that much of the first building was saved. The Bear Island Lighthouse was painted at least once by Lane during a visit to the region in 1855.

This information has been shared with the Lane project by Jeremy D'Entremont. More information can be found at his website, and The Lighthouse Handbook New England. 

Related tables: Bear Island »

photo (historical)
Bear Island Light
U.S. Coast Guard
Photography courtesy of :
photo (historical)
Bear Island Light (S.W. Harbor)

From The Illustrated Coast Pilot with sailing directions. The Coast of New England from New York to Eastport, Maine including Bays and Harbors, published by N.L. Stebbins, Boston, Mass.

Also filed under: Bear Island »

Entrance to Southwest Harbor
"U.S. Coast Pilot, Atlantic Coast, Parts I–II." First edition. Published by Washington GPO, 1891
Folded plate between pp. 62 and 63
U.S. Coast Survey Chart: South West Harbor and Somes Sound
19 x 28 in.
Survey of the Coast of the United States, Washington, D.C.
Citation: "Historical Materials." Fitz Henry Lane Online. Cape Ann Museum. (accessed July 24, 2024).
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