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Name: Block Island North Light   Map it!

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Also known as: Sandy Point Light

Nearest Town or City:
New Shoreham, Rhode Island, United States

Location: Sandy Point, northern tip of Block Island.

Click to enlarge: Photo   
Photo: Jeremy D'Entremont
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Managing Organization:
Block Island North Light Association

Telephone: 401-466-8620

Contact Address Information:
P. O. Box 1662
Block Island
Rhode Island, 02807, United States

The North Light was deactivated in 1973 and replaced by a skeleton tower. The lighthouse was acquired by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. In 1984 it was transferred to the town of New Shoreham. After some restoration, in 1989 the light was moved back to the lighthouse; in 1993 the first floor was opened as a museum. The navigational light was temporarily relocated to a steel tower near the end of the point in 2003, in anticipation of the restoration of the tower.

Tower Height: 55

Height of Focal Plane: 61

Characteristic and Range: Flashing white every five seconds.

Description of Tower: Octagonal tower on roof of granite dwelling, with black cast iron lantern,

This light is operational

Other Buildings?
Granite keeper's house (integral to tower), two storage buildings.

Earlier Towers?
1829: Two lights on opposite ends of keeper's dwelling; 1837: New building simliar to first; 1857: third structure.

Date Established: 1829

Date Present Tower Built: 1868

Date Deactivated: 1970-1989

Date Automated: 1990

Optics: 1829: Both lanterns had 7 lamps with 16-inch reflectors; 1868: Fourth order Fresnel lens; Present optic: 190 mm

Current Use: Active aid to navigation, museum.

Open To Public? Yes.

The North Light Interpretive Center is open mid-June to Labor Day, daily 10 am to 4 pm. From Labor Day to Columbus Day it's open Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, 10 am to 4 pm. The museum is in the first floor of the keeper's quarters. There are displays on Block Island's lifesaving service, flora and fauna, and the history of the lighthouse. The North Light's old fourth order Fresnel lens is on display. There are also restrooms in the building and a small gift shop. There is a small admission fee.

Block Island can be reached by ferry from Point Judith (RI), New London (CT) and Montauk (NY). For information on the Point Judith and New London ferries call Interstate Navigation at (401) 783-4613. For information on the Montauk ferry, call Viking Fleet Ferry Lines at (516) 668-5700. You can also fly to Block Island via New England Airlines from Westerly (RI) Airport; call (800) 243-2460 or (401) 596-2460. Block Island Holidays offers a wide range of tour packages and activies on the island; call (800) 905-0590 or (401) 466-3115. Block Island North Light is a few miles from the ferry landing. Bicycle rentals are available, and taxis are usually in the vicinity of the ferry. If you bring your car: leave the ferry and turn right on Water Street. Follow into Dodge Street. Turn right at Corn Neck Road and follow to the free parking area at the end of the road. The lighthouse is about a one-half mile walk on the sandy beach.

Mapquest URL: Click here to get a map to this lighthouse!

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places

Keepers: William A. Weeden (1829-1839); Simeon Babcock (1839-1841 and 1845-1849); Edward Mott II (1841-1845 and 1849-1850); Enoch Rose, Jr. (1850-1858); Nicholas Littlefield (1858-1861); Hiram D. Ball (1861-1891); Elam Littlefield (1891-1923); John F. Anderson (1923-1926); Ezra B. Dunn (1926-1938); Howard B. Beebe (1938-1945); John Lee, Jr. (1945-1952); William H. McAffee (1952-1955); Donald M. Lawson (Coast Guard, 1955-1956).


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