Friday, February 22, 2013

The Cape San Blas, Florida, Lighthouse-- Part 2

When the trade in the bay fell off after the town of St. Joseph (Old Port Joe) was abandoned in 1847, it was decided to build a new one at the cape's elbow.  The first lighthouse was dismantled and the 85-foot tower rebuilt and completed in 1848.  Sadly, it collapsed during a bad gale Aug-23-24, 1851.  This storm also destroyed lighthouses at nearby Cape St. George and Dog Island.

Congress allocated $12,000 to rebuild it, but yellow fever outbreaks delayed its completion until 1855.  Ten months later, a hurricane struck and destroyed it, with one report stating, "a lagoon now occupies the site of the lighthouse."

The need was still there for another lighthouse, so in 1857, Congress allocated $20,000 for a third brick tower and this one was first lit in 1858.  Then came the Civil War and the lighthouse fell into Confederate hands.  The Confederate lighthouse supervisor determined that the isolated light would too easily be captured by patrolling Union gunboats and ordered the lens removed and hidden inland.

Time to maybe Forget About It.  --RoadDog

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