Old Plantation Flats Lighthouse

Old Plantation Flats Lighthouse was built in 1886 as a white rectangular screwpile with a tower on the roof. The lighthouse was located at the entrance to the channel leading to Cape Charles, Virginia and Old Plantation Creek. The lighthouse had an unusual foundation construction with a combination of screwpile and concrete pylons.
The lighthouse was damaged in 1893 by ice flows and the fifth order Fresnel lens was destroyed. A month later a new fifth-order lens was installed.

The lighthouse was once again damaged by ice flows in 1918 and was later reinforced with concrete.

The lighthouse was deactivated in 1962 and dismantled. It was replaced with an automated steel skeleton tower built on the original foundation.

Photo courtesy U.S. Coast Guard.

In the spring of 2004, Bay Creek Resort & Club, Cape Charles, VA, built an exact replica of Old Plantation Flats Lighthouse in a man-made lake along the shores of Chesapeake Bay, just two miles from the original station. As of 2013, it’s not yet open to the public.

Head Keepers:  : Leonard F. Godwin (1886 – 1887), William G. Bell (1887 – 1889), William T. Travis (1889), Levin S. James (1889 – 1891), James S. Nock (1891 – 1892), William Gunter (1893), Joseph R. Diggs (1893 – 1894), John W. Thomas (1894 – 1895), Charles E. Kirwan (1895 – 1907), George P. Hudgins (1907), Temple Ripley (1907 – 1908), Clarence W. Salter (1908 – 1912), Horace C. Groom (1912 – at least 1913), Charles S. Hudgins (at least 1915 – 1919), Stratton B. Robins (1919 – 1921), James W. Simpson (1921 – 1922), William J. Diggs (1922 – 1924), A.B. Sadler (1923 – at least 1925), C.B. Quidley (at least 1926 – at least 1931), Loren E. Tillett (1936 – 1941), Eldred J. Cherrix (1941 – 1943)

Assistant: Laban T. Lewis (1886 – 1887),William T. Travis (1887 – 1889), William J. Rolley (1889), James S. Nock (1889 – 1891), William R. Wescott (1891 – 1893), John W. Thomas (1893), Charles E. Respess (1894), Charles E. Kirwan (1894 – 1895), Owen Cosgrove (1895), George W. Brooks (1896 – 1898), Alexander T. Loss (1898 – 1899), Marshall P. Grymes (1899), Malachi D. Swain (1899 – 1900), W.S. Adams (1900), George M. Scarborough (1900 – 1901), Charles F. Taylor (1901 – 1902), George A. Dow (1902), Frank Wilkins (1902), Gary E. Powell (1902 – 1903), John Wade (1903), Alaska D. Jennett (1903 – 1904), C.W. Salter (1894 – 1905), Robert H. Sterling (1904 – 1905), Jesse J. Milliner (1905), Riley S. Hudgins (1905), Edward L. Thomas (1905 – 1906), Archie F. Brooks (1906), John W. Wade (1906), Luther D. Burrus (1906 – 1907), Homer T. Austin (1908), Oscar H. Daniels (1908 – 1909), Charles Vette (1909 – 1910), Malachi D. Swain (1910), James O. Casey (1910 – 1911), Ulman Owens (1911), Alexander B. Curtis (1911), George W. Adams (1911 – at least 1913), George C. Johnson (1915 – 1918), William J. Kelly (1918 – 1920), George C. Johnson (at least 1921), George S. Rollinson (at least 1927 – at least 1939)

Updated 6/2/2019


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