Timeline: Wolf Trap Lighthouse

(Located three miles offshore, between the York & entrance to Rappahannock Rivers, Mathews County, VA – 03-14-18)

1821 Lightship stationed on Wolf Trap Shoal.

1861 Confederate troops destroy lightship.

1864 Lightship station re-established.

1870 Screw pile lighthouse built on shoal.

1893 Lighthouse destroyed by ice floes and swept 20 miles down the bay, settling near Thimble Shoal. Temporary lightship on duty.

1894 Present 52-foot tall caisson tower built. Equipped with 4th-order Fresnel lens.

1904 Schooner Dorothy Palmer runs aground at lighthouse.

1908 -1909 John Filmore Hudgins serves as First Assistant Keeper.

1909 Schooner Cary Ann Bell sinks near lighthouse.

1918 Assistant Keeper John Morgan rescues crew of disabled plane.

1919 Keeper and assistant aid family of six stranded by storm.

Late 1920s Exterior brick painted red for protection from salt spray.

1954 Floyd Earl Crewe begins Keeper duty.

1968 Keeper Crewe – the last U.S. Lighthouse Service civilian keeper retires after 38 years of service.

1971 Automation.

2004/2005 Lighthouse becomes available for ownership under the provisions of the NHLPA. Sold at auction to James Korstad of Seattle for $75,000, who had wanted to turn it into a bed & breakfast.

2006 Korstad sells lighthouse to veterinarian James Southard, Jr. for $115,000. Lighthouse remains active.

2012 The Lighthouse is once again for sale at the asking price of $288,000.

2017 The U.S. Coast Guard declares that the lighthouse is unsafe for personnel to access and maintain the light and the light is discontinued.  Lighthouse Digest adds it to the Doomsday List.

2018 The Lighthouse is still for sale at a price of $249,000.

2023 The lighthouse is purchased at a price of $125,000 by Richard Cuce’, of Pennsylvania.

Source: Bay Beacons by Linda Turbyville, Lighthouses of Maryland/Virginia-History, Mystery, Legends & Lore by Bob Trapani, Jr. and Lighthouse Friends web site – http://lighthousefriends.com/light.asp?ID=441

Permanent link to this article: https://cheslights.org/timeline-wolf-trap-lighthouse/