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Name: Fort Pickering Light  

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Also known as: Winter Island Light

Nearest Town or City:
Salem, Massachusetts, United States

Location: Winter Island, Salem Harbor.

Click to enlarge: Photo   
Photo: Jeremy D'Entremont

Managing Organization:
Winter Island Marine Recreational Park

Telephone: 978-745-9430


Contact Address Information:
50 Winter Island Road
Massachusetts, 01970, United States

Fort Pickering Light was replaced by an offshore buoy in 1969. In 1983 local citizens and businesses formed the Fort Pickering Light Association. They restored the lighthouse and it was relighted in 1983 as a private aid to navigation. The lighthouse was refurbished in 1999.

Height of Focal Plane: 28

Characteristic and Range: Flashing white every four seconds.

Description of Tower: White conical cast iron tower with black cast iron lantern; on concrete foundation.

This light is operational

Other Buildings?
None. The keeper's house was removed by the Coast Guard.

Date Established: 1871

Date Present Tower Built: 1871

Date Deactivated: 1969-1983

Optics: 1871: ? Order Fresnel lens; now 300 mm, solar powered.

Current Use: Active private aid to navigation.

Open To Public? Grounds only.


From downtown Salem, follow Derby Street and Fort Avenue northeast toward Salem Willows Park. Watch for a large "Winter Island Marine Recreation Area" sign. Turn right onto Winter Island Road and continue to the park's entrance. There is a parking fee from May to September daily and weekends into October. There are additional fees for picnic sites and camping, and for use of the boat launch. In the off season there are no parking fees. Bear left through the gate and head toward the water and lighthouse. Trails lead past the lighthouse and through the remains of Fort Pickering. The Salem Trolley provides guided toursw of the city daily from April through October. The tours stop at various points of interest including Winter Island. Tickets are available at the National Park Service Visitor Center in Salem and the Trolley Depot. For more information call (978) 744-5469. The Friends of the Boston Harbor Islands run occasional lighthouse cruises that may pass Fort Pickering Light; call (781) 740-4290.

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places

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