Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Sandy Hook Lighthouse, NJ

The Sandy Hook Lighthouse, located about one and a half statute miles (2.4 km) inland from the tip of Sandy Hook, NJ is the oldest working lighthouse in the United States. It was designed and built in 1764 by Isaac Conro.

The light was built to aid mariners entering the southern end of the New York harbor. It was originally called New York Lighthouse because it was funded through a New York Assembly lottery and a tax on all ships entering the Port of New York. Sandy Hook Light has endured an attempt to destroy it (as an aid to British navigation) by artillery Captain Alexander Hamilton, and a subsequent occupancy of British soldiers during the Revolutionary War. Perhaps most impressively, it has endured exposure to the elements on the end of Sandy Hook. The view of the New York skyline from the bridge crossing into "the Hook" illustrates the importance this light played in the history of New York harbor.

During summer weekends, the New Jersey Lighthouse Society offers free tours every half hour from 12:00 p.m. until 4:30 p.m.

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