CAPE FLORIDA LIGHTHOUSE
Bill Baggs State Recreation Area
Key Biscayne, FL
Commissioned by Congress in 1821 and built in 1825, the brick tower with walls five feet thick at the base, tapering to two feet at the top, marks the reef four miles offshore and guides ships through the Florida Channel.
Originally, the tower was 65' high but was raised in 1855 to 100'. In 1861 Confederate sympathizers destroyed the light which was restored in 1866. In 1875, the lighthouse board replaced the tower with an iron-pile structure on Fowey Rocks seven miles to the southeast and closed the Cape Florida Lighthouse in 1878.
In 1978, 100 years later, the U.S. Coast Guard refurbished and recommissioned the light to serve as a navigational aid for the Cape Florida channel. Fresnel lenses concentrate a small light that can be seen seven miles at sea.
LIGHTHOUSE - 100' / OPEN - Yes / MUSEUM - Yes / FEE - Yes