CREDITS: I would like to thank Jeremy D'Entremont for providing much of the history one can find on this site. He is a speaker, author, historian, and tour guide who is widely recognized as the foremost authority on the lighthouses of New England. For a story on Jeremy or to visit his site (New England Lighthouses: A Virtual Guide), use the corresponding link in the right hand information bar under "Related Links".

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I have set up this site as a means to share my photographs of lighthouses. Since retiring and finding more time to study photography, my interests have expanded a little. For some of my work other than lighthouses please enjoy my Facebook page at, John Shaw Photography. Come visit, enjoy, and 'LIKE' if you wish.

Also, for your enjoyment, I have provided a slideshow of our journey. To view it please use the link on the right under 'Site Navigation Tools'.

I sincerely hope you enjoy my efforts and use my site not only for information and education but also to provide directions for many enjoyable, inspirational visits to the beacons along our beautiful coas.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Egg Rock Lighthouse

      Egg Rock, a tiny island in Frenchman Bay, was first mentioned by that name in the American Neptune before the American Revolution. The rocky outpost, which was also known for a time as Gull Island, was named for the proliferation of seabirds’ nests and eggs found there.

     Because of the growing seasonal ferry traffic to Bar Harbor, Congress appropriated $15,000 for a light station on Egg Rock in June 1874. The lighthouse went into service on November 1, 1875.

     On March 25, 1876, a great gale flooded the dwelling and smashed its windows, moved the fog bell tower 30 feet, and swept away a fuel shed. After similar damage in a December 1887 storm, a new skeletal bell tower was securely bolted to the rock.

     The dwelling was altered around 1900, when a second story was added and the original roof was replaced by the present roof.  A new compressed-air fog horn was established in 1904, partly in response to the grounding of the battleship Massachusetts the previous year.  The horn was operated for 348 hours in the month of July 1906 alone. It was in operation for 1,813 hours in 1907, the equivalent of 75 full days.

     Another fierce storm on February 1, 1908, broke through the shutters and flooded the house. Rocks weighing up to 30 tons were moved by the gale. Heber Sawyer entered a familiar phrase in the station’s log: “Everything moveable was washed away.”

     Keepers at Egg Rock generally rowed to Bar Harbor, four miles away, for supplies. The trip could be treacherous in times of bad weather and rough seas.  The Coast Guard keepers were removed and the light was automated in 1976. 

     Today a boathouse, oil house, and generator house still stand along with the lighthouse. Egg Rock Light is passed by many tour boats and whale watches leaving Bar Harbor. It can also be seen distantly from high points on Mount Desert Island.

     In the fall of 2009, a group of volunteers performed some renovation of the lighthouse. The crews were transported by Bar Harbor Whale Watch, which donated its services. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service provided materials for the work, which included staining and repairs. The generator building was re-roofed. 

     Directions The Loop Road in Acadia National park offers distant views of this light from several scenic overlooks on the eastern side of the park.  The best light for photographs from there is in the afternoon.  The above photo was taken on a whale watching trip out of Bar Harbor which pass this light.  Morning light is best for photos taken on one of these trips.

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