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Name: Seal Island Light (NS)  

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Nearest Town or City:
Clark's Harbour, Nova Scotia, Canada

Location: Offshore from Cape Sable Island, entrance to Bay of Fundy.

Click to enlarge: Photo   
Photo: Virginia Slechta
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Managing Organization:
Cape Sable Historical Society

Telephone: 902-637-2185


This is the second oldest lighthouse tower in Nova Scotia. The lantern and lens were removed from the lighthouse in 1978; they are now on top of the Seal Island Lighthouse Museum in Barrington. The museum is operated by the Cape Sable Historical Society; the lighthouse is still maintained by the Canadian Coast Guard. The lighthouse is on the Doomsday List of the Nova Scotia Lighthouse Preservation Society; the surrounding land is under threat by real estate investors who have already bought half the island and threaten access.

Tower Height: 67

Height of Focal Plane: 102

Characteristic and Range: Flashing white every 10 seconds.

Description of Tower: Octagonal wooden tower with red and white horizontal stripes, red aluminum lantern.

This light is operational

Other Buildings?
Radio operator's house, barn.

Date Established: 1831

Date Present Tower Built: 1831

Date Automated: 1990

Optics: 1902: Second order Fresnel lens (now at Seal Island Lighthouse Museum), 1978: DCB 36.

Fog Signal: Automated horn - Blast 2s; sil. 3s; blast 2s;sil. 3s; blast 2s; sil. 48s.

Current Use: Active aid to navigation.

Open To Public? Yes.

The Seal Island Museum, a replica of the top half of the Seal Island Lighthouse, tells the history of the lights on Cape Sable Island, Bon Portage, and Seal Island. The building is topped by the lantern which was removed from the tower in 1978. To get to the Seal Island Lighthouse Museum from Route 103, turn into Barrington. The museum is on Route 3. The museum is open June 1 to September 30, Monday through Saturday 9:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m., Sunday 1 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.

Seal Island is accessible by boat only. The Nova Scotia Lighthouse Preservation Society hosts a guided trip each September. This two-day trip includes a two-hour cruise on a Cape Island boat to the remote island. Explore the rocky coastline, learn the romantic story of the establishment of the light station, and stay overnight in the fishermen's bunkhouse. For more information email the NSLPS at You can also go to Seal Island with Charles Kenney at Seal Island Tours. You can email him at

Keepers: Richard Hichens, Edmund Crowell (1831-1855), Corning Crowell (son of Edmund, 1855-1870), Corning Crowell, Jr. (died while keeper, 1870-1891), John Crowell (son of Corning Sr., 1891-1927), Ellsworth Hamilton (died while keeper, 1927-1941), Lewis Sinney (1941-1946), Edward Gallant (1946-1950), Elijah Jeffrey (1950-1951), Bradford Flemming (1951-1973), Maurice Swim (1973-1977), James Nickerson (1977-1978), Raymond Tiner (1978-1985), Clayton Penney (1985-1988), Lawrence Welch (1988-1990), Brian Stoddard (1990).


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