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Name: Carysfort Reef Light  

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Nearest Town or City:
Key Largo, Florida, United States

Location: Carysfort Reef, upper Florida Keys.

Click to enlarge: Photo    Large photo

Managing Organization:
U.S. Coast Guard

A lightship was in this location from 1825 to 1852. The lighthouse, designed by George Meade, was the first iron screw pile lighthouse in the Florida keys. The lighthouse is now within the John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park, the first undersea park in the U.S. For information on boating and other activities in the park, call (305) 451-1202. The Coast Guard refurbished the lighthouse in 1996. Qm1 Chuck Owens of the U.S. Coast Guard sent the following comments: "I used to fish just off this light when I was a kid with my dad and brothers in the 1960s. We would climb up and spend the night at the base and there is a deep hole just to seaward of the light that we would catch large jewfish, sharks and groupers. I was a lot of fun and I still remember those days when I sail down the Florida straits!"

Tower Height: 120

Description of Tower: Iron skeletal tower with integral keeper's quarters.

Listed on the Lighthouse Digest Doomsday List of endangered lighthouses.

This light is operational

Date Established: 1825

Date Present Tower Built: 1852

Date Automated: 1960

Optics: 1852: First order Fresnel lens, now VRB-25, solar powered. The Fresnel lens is now at the Historical Museum of Southern Florida in Miami, (305) 375-1492.

Current Use: Active aid to navigation.

Open To Public? No.

Accessible by boat only.

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places

Keepers: Edward Bell (?-1881), H. W. Magill (1881), F. A. Brost (1881-1885), Martin Weatherford (1885-1886), William Lester (1886-1894), Francis McNulty (1894-1903), Miguel (Migiel ?) Fabal (1903-1912)

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