b_786_Cape_Henlopen_DE_US.jpeg (698.53 KB)
US Lighthouse Establishment
Photo Courtesy of:
US Lighthouse Society
Collection / Donor:
City / Town:
OWNER & ACCESS
Open to Public:
Light List Data:
Tower Washed Away 1926
Year Tower Established:
Tower Construction Material:
Height of light above mean high water, in feet:
164 feet above water
Height, in feet, from base of structure to center of lantern:
Fog Signal Building?:
Year Keeper's Quarters:
Keeper's Quarters Construction:
Original Optic Type:
18 - 21 inch reflectors replaced by a 1st Order Fresnel Lens in 1856
Year Original Lens Installed:
USCG Access to Optics:
Cape Henlopen Lighthouse was constructed on the north side of the Great Dune to obtain additional height.
- 1762: Lottery started to obtain funds for the construction of the Cape Henlopen Lighthouse.
- 1767: Lighthouse construction completed.
- 1769: first lit.
- 1777: during the American Revolution, the lighthouse was almost completely destroyed by the British.
- 1784: The damage was repaired and it was relit.
- 1792: The lighthouse was transferred to the United States.
- 1863: New Keeper's dwelling built.
- 1897: The sand dune surrounding the tower was reported to be steadily blowing away at a rate of 3 to 5 feet a year.
- 1905: several tons of brush were placed about the tower and oil house to prevent the foundations and brick walls from being undermined by the drifting away of the sand.
- 1924: The tower was discontinued as a lighthouse and the lens was removed from the light for refurbishing and to be placed on display. The light was last shown on September 30, 1924.
- 1924: An auxiliary wooden tower was built west of the old Cape Henlopen light.
- 1926: A storm undermined the tower, causing it to fall seaward.
Jan 15, 2018