Timeline: Smith Point Lighthouse

(Located 80 miles south of Baltimore on the Virginia side of the entrance of the Potomac River, 2.5 miles east-southeast of Smith Point)

1802-93 Two land-based lighthouses, two lightships and one screwpile in service.

1893 Screwpile damaged by ice. Keepers abandon station.

1895 Screwpile carried away by ice.

1897 Present 52 foot tall caisson light in 20 feet of water, constructed from the same plans to build Wolf Trap LH and using pneumatic process. Octagonal, two story brick dwelling with square tower rising 30 feet above the top of the cylinder. 4th Order Fresnel lens from last screwpile installed in tower.

1936 Station fitted with radio equipment.

1970 Termites found in wooden areas of third level. Eradicated by Orkin Pest Company.

1971 Automation.

1980s New submarine power cable installed.

1991 Major overhaul by U.S. Coast Guard.

12/05 Lighthouse purchased by Dave & Teri McNally of Minnesota. Tower remains active aid to navigation.

Sources: Bay Beacons by Linda Turbyville and Lighthouses of Maryland and Virginia, History, Mystery, Legends & Lore by Bob Trapani, Jr.

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