National Park Service
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COCKSPUR ISLAND LIGHT

State: GEORGIA
Location: SAVANNAH RIVER N. OF TYBEE ISLAND
Nearest City: TYBEE ISLAND
County: CHATHAM
Year Station Established: 1772
Year Automated: N/A
U.S.C.G. District: 7
Year Existing Historic Tower Constructed: 1857


Cockspur Island Light
NPS photo courtesy of Fort Pulaski National Monument
Existing Historic Tower:
  • Is the Light Operational? NO; Date Deactivated: 1909
  • Foundation Materials: OYSTER SHELL
  • Construction Materials: BRICK
  • Markings/Patterns: WHITE
  • Shape: CONICAL
  • Relationship to Other Structures: SEPARATE
  • Tower Height: 46/Height of Focal Plane:
  • Original Optic: FOURTH ORDER, FRESNEL (1857)
  • Present Optic: REMOVED
Modern Tower? NO

Existing Fog Signal Building? NO

Existing Keepers Quarters? NO

Other Structures: NONE

Previous Towers:
BETWEEN MARCH 31, 1837, AND NOVEMBER 1839, A BRICK BEACON WITH NO LIGHT WAS BUILT; CONVERTED TO A LIGHTHOUSE IN 1849. THE 1849 TOWER HAD FIVE LAMPS WITH 14-INCH REFLECTORS WITH A FOCAL PLANE LOCATED 25 FEET ABOVE SEA LEVEL AND VISIBLE FOR NINE MILES. DAMAGED BY A HURRICANE AND REBUILT IN 1857

Owner/Manager: NATIONAL PARK SERVICE

Current Use: NATIONAL PARK: FORT PULASKI NATIONAL MONUMENT

Open to the Public? YES; LIGHTHOUSE IS OPEN DAILY; HOWEVER, ACCESS IS BY BOAT, NPS DOES NOT PROVIDE BOAT ACCESS OR GUIDED TOURS
  • Access: BOAT
  • Public Phone: 912-786-5787
National Register Status: PART OF LISTING: FORT PULASKI NATIONAL MONUMENT

Miscellaneous:
The lighthouse was in the line of fire between Union forces on Tybee island and Confederate forces in Fort Pulaski. During a 30-hour battel in April 1862, over 5,000 rounds of artillery were exchanged by the two sides, but the light survived unscathed.

Mary Maher, the only woman keeper at Cockspur, was selected in 1853 as a result of her husband's death caused by a capsized boat.

Patrick Eagan, keeper from October 1856 to August 1871, was killed while attempting to service the light during a severe storm when his boat capsized.




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Last Modified: Mon, Feb 25 2002 9:39:02 am EDT
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