Hooper Strait, 1827-1867
LV-25 was a 61-foot wood schooner built in the Chesapeake Bay area and stationed in Hooper Strait in 1827. The lighting apparatus was a single lantern, an oil lamp with 11 cylindrical wicks. There was also a hand-operated bell and horn which served as the fog signal.
The condition of the schooner had deteriorated through the years and a new ship was commissioned in 1845. The new LV-25 was a 69-foot wood schooner built by William Easby of Alexandria, Virginia. The equipment from the first lightship was relocated to the new ship including the lantern and mast. It was taken to the Hooper Strait station in September 1846.
LV-25 remained at the station during the Civil War. The U.S. Lighthouse Board reported in 1862 “All the light-vessels from Cape Henry southward, including the two in the Potomac River and these in Chesapeake Bay (except Hooper’s Straits and Jane’s Island,) have been removed and sunk or destroyed by the insurgents.”
In 1866, the ship started to leak and needed major repairs. It was decided that a screwpile lighthouse would be built to take the place of the vessel. Hooper Strait Lighthouse was completed in September 1867 and the ship was taken to Norfolk for repairs.
LV-25 finished out serving as Relief (VA) from 1867-1870 (Deepwater Shoal lighthouse reconstruction); Choptank River (Maryland) entrance (lighthouse construction) from 1870-1871; Eel Grass Shoal (Connecticut) from 1872-1877; and Relief (Connecticut) from 1877-1884 (Robbins Reef lighthouse construction). In 1885 the ship was retired from lightship duty and sold at a public auction in Connecticut at a price of $101.02
No photo available.
Keepers: Robert Griffith (1843 – 1845), Henry S. Denton (1845 – 1849), George Keene (1849 – 1853), Severn Mister (1853), Thomas Hardison (1853 – 1855), Washington Slocum (1855 – 1857), Peter Kirwan (1857 – 1858), Charles V. Crockett (1858 – 1861), Martin L. Wall (1861 – 1865), Joshua Jefferson (1865 – 1866), Zebedee Harper (1866 – 1867)