Alligator Reef Lighthouse – Florida Keys History

Built in 1873, Alligator Reef Lighthouse stands guard in honor of its namesake, the USS Alligator. In 1822, just two years out of the shipyard, the Navy schooner was on rounds to recapture and free ships that were taken in the pirate-heavy seas of the Caribbean. At Alligator Reef, a notoriously difficult area to navigate, the […]
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Kenneth Lohmann Leaving His Mark Offshore Hammer Point Tavernier

For the past few months, Kenneth Lohmann has been building markers and placing them on rocks in the waters outside his bayside home in the Hammer Point neighborhood of Tavernier. The markers are to safely guide boaters away from the dangerously shallow water next to the area’s canals. The longtime Florida Keys resident turned 90 […]
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Snorkeling (Not Just) For Wimps Part 2 – Islamorada Alligator Reef

Islamorada Alligator Reef – This was my second ever snorkeling trip and I feel that I have now just about advanced from ‘wimp’ status to ‘slightly nervous snorkeler clenching a noodle’. I smugly noticed that some people were more wimpy than me on this trip. It was satisfying to hear intermittent shrieking that definitely wasn’t my […]
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September – Things to Do in the Upper Keys

With Fall soon approaching, Thursday, September 22, things are changing in the Florida Keys. September 5th is Labor Day so from Sept. 2 to 5 it the Florida Keys will be hopping with the last big holiday weekend of the Summer. After that, Florida Keys tourism starts to quiet down and you can find some great deals […]
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Sand Key Lighthouse Built in 1853 | The Florida Memory Blog

Lighthouses in the Florida Keys have a tough task to manage. The area is not only strewn with coral reefs and shoals, but is also a favorite highway for destructive hurricanes and other storms. The Sand Key Lighthouse, the southernmost lighthouse in the United States, has been in operation since 1827, and has borne witness […]
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Florida Keys Reef Lighthouses Getting Help

The Florida Keys Reef Lights Foundation has received permission from the Coast Guard to replace the zinc anodes on the Florida Keys Reef Lighthouses Carysfort, Alligator, Sombrero and American Shoal reef lights, according to foundation officials. Zinc anodes, which serve as a sacrificial metal, are used to preserve the iron legs of the lights, much […]
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Florida Keys Lighthouses Endangered Historical Resources

The 6 Florida Keys Lighthouses are among the 11 “most endangered” historic sites in the state this year, says a statewide preservation group. This week, the nonprofit Florida Trust for Historic Preservation, meeting for its annual conference in Tallahassee, released its list of 2016’s most threatened historic resources. The lighthouses are on the list. Here’s what […]
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Florida Keys History – Northwest Channel Lighthouse

1855: Northwest Channel Lighthouse was first lighted. This lighthouse was located eight miles (13 km) from Key West, Florida, at the entrance to the northwest channel to the Key West harbor. The first light was a lightship put on station in 1838. It is not known if the lightship survived the Great Havana Hurricane of 1846, which destroyed […]
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Upper Florida Keys Suggestions For Your Bucket List

Do you know how many parks there are in the Upper Florida Keys? Me neither. Between the City Parks: Islamorada’s Founders Park and Anne’s Beach, Monroe County Parks: Harry Harris, Florida State Parks: John Pennekamp and Lignumvitae and the National Parks-Refuges-Sanctuaries: Everglades, Crocodile Lake and the all encompassing Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary, you are […]
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Old Key West Lighthouse Gets New Coat of Paint And More

Key West lighthouse was decommissioned back in 1969. But it recently got a thorough restoration, from the railings around the top to the paint on the sides. From left, project manager Johnnie Yongue, architect David Salay and project manager Daniel Bensley check out the newly restored Key West Lighthouse, which recently re-opened to the public. CREDIT […]
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Fowey Rocks Lighthouse Endangered Historic Places

The Fowey Rocks Lighthouse in Biscayne National Park has been listed by the Florida Trust for Historic Preservation as one of the 11 most endangered historic sites in the state. The Fowey Rocks Lighthouse is included along with five other reef lighthouses in the Florida Keys. “A lighthouse that has kept mariners and their ships […]
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New Exhibits Opening: Lighthouses of the Florida Reef

The first survey of the Florida Reef was performed by naturalist Louis Agassiz aboard the Coast Survey Schooner Petrel. Lieutenant James Totten of the U.S. Army accompanied the Coast Survey team when the initial study of the Florida Reef system was made in 1852. Lighthouses of the Florida Reef is being presented in partnership with […]
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The Story of Lightship Captain John Whalton from Key West

The government’s first effort to mark Carysfort Reef came in the form of the 220-ton two-masted schooner Caesar. The Caesar was a lightship. Each of its two masts was fitted with a lantern designed to be visible up to 12 miles away. The ship also had a bell that would echo across the Atlantic with every […]
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Historic Key West Lighthouse Closing for Renovations

BY ANTHONY CAVE acave@keynoter.com This is the interior roof of the lighthouse. Like other sections of the lighthouse, it shows rust. The spiraling climb up 88 steps to the top of the Key West lighthouse, and everything around it, is likely to see renovations later this year. The Lighthouse at 938 Whitehead St., which includes […]
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