Timeline: Tangier Sound Lighthouse

1887: The lighthouse board requests $25,000 to construct a screwpile lighthouse at the Tangier Island Shoal, at the entrance to Tangier Sound in the Chesapeake Bay.

1888: Congress appropriates $25,000 to construct a lighthouse at Tangier Island Shoal on October 2.

1889: Plans & specifications are prepared, and proposals were opened on March 16 for furnishing and delivering the metalwork of Tangier Sound Lighthouse & Cobb Point Bar Lighthouse. The framing of the superstructure at Lazaretto Depot, Baltimore was completed in September.

1890: Construction of the square, screwpile lighthouse is completed and the fourth-order light is first exhibited on June 30.

1901: Soundings are made around the lighthouse to determine the amount of erosion.

1905: Schooner Mary L. Colburn ran aground on the bar next to the lighthouse. When the ice broke on February 13, it was moved with such force that it propelled the schooner into the lighthouse causing the ship’s masts to become intertwined with the roof and lantern. Lighthouse tender Maple was sent to rescue the keeper and pull the schooner off the lighthouse.

1913: On October 6, Keeper Edward L. Thomas and Assistant William A. Crockett rescued a disabled gasoline boat.

1914: Keeper Edward L. Thomas made a brave but unsuccessful attempt to save the life of Assistant Keeper William A. Crockett.

1915: On April 27, Keeper Edward L. Thomas rescues 3 men from a disabled motorboat.

1917: On July 31, Keeper Malachi D. Swain and Assistant Keeper George M. Wible towed a disabled boat to the lighthouse and made repairs to its engine.

1918: Keeper G.M. Wible gives assistance to a grounded barge near the lighthouse. Congress appropriates $384,000 to lighthouses in the fifth district for the purpose of repairing and rebuilding all lighthouses damaged by storms and ice.

1919: During the winter of 1917-1918, dangerous ice floes damaged the wrought-iron piles supporting the lighthouse. To strengthen the piles and prevent further damage from moving ice, a concrete caisson was constructed below the structure encasing the damaged piles in solid concrete. In addition, 1,000 tons of riprap stones are placed to protect the structure from further erosion and ice damage. The total cost of work was $32,573.

1922: An additional 262 tons of riprap stone is deposited.

1923: On March 19, Keeper George M. Wible rescues six men from drowning after being adrift in a small boat during a heavy snowstorm.

1926: On December 24 and 26, Keeper Walter W. Thomas helps provides aid to the crew of the schooners Minnie and Emma.

1927: Keeper W.W. Thomas and Second Assistant Keeper T.J. Cropper provide aid and rescue three people from the disabled powerboat Pearl Davenport.

1961: The lighthouse is dismantled, and an automated light mounted on a skeletal tower is mounted on the screwpile foundation.

1. Annual Report of the Lighthouse Board, various years.
2. Forgotten Beacons, Patrick Hornberger & Linda Turbyville, 1997.
3. Lighthouse Friends website, accessed 5 February 2020

Permanent link to this article: https://cheslights.org/template-timeline-tangier-sound-lighthouse/