Cape Meares Lighthouse
Jon Burch Photography
Photograph - Digital Capture
This is the Cape Meares lighthouse on the Oregon coast. It is an inactive lighthouse on the coast of Oregon located on Cape Meares, just south of Tillamook Bay. The lighthouse is open to the public.
Built in 1890, Cape Meares Light served as the light station for Tillamook Bay. When it was built, the lighthouse complex included two keeper's houses, two oil houses, and two cisterns, and was connected to the light by a 1,000 feet boardwalk. Later additions included an attached workroom in 1895 and a garage in 1934. The light itself was iron-plated, and due to its exposure to the elements, required frequent repainting over the years. No foghorn was ever installed at Cape Meares. In 1934, the light received electricity making the oil houses unnecessary and they were removed.
In 1963, the lighthouse was deactivated and replaced by a newer tower. The following year, the Coast Guard made plans to demolish the light. However, due to public outcry, the plans fell through, and the Coast Guard turned the station over to Tillamook County. The light remained vacant until 1968, when the site was turned over to the Oregon State Parks Department. Eventually, the vandalism took its toll on the keeper's quarters and they were subsequently demolished. Among the damage, four of the bulls-eyes in the Fresnel lens were stolen. That same year, the light was opened up to the public and the light was restored, with the exception of the missing bulls-eyes. Since then, three of the four missing bulls-eyes have been recovered and in 1980, the tower itself was opened to the public. The structure was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1993.
Photograph copyright Jon Burch Photography
April 14th, 2012
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