Historic Light Station Information
& Photography

TEXAS


ARANSAS (PORT ARANSAS) PASS LIGHT

Location: EASTERLY EDGE OF HARBOR ISLAND
Station Established: 1855
Year First Lit: 1857
Operational: Yes, as a private aid
Automated: N/A
Deactivated: 1952
Tower Shape/Markings/Pattern: Brown, octagonal, pyramidal tower made of brick; lantern, black; two dwellings near (as of 1903).
Height: 65'
Original Lens: FOURTH ORDER
Characteristic: Fixed white
Fog Horn: None

Historical Information:

Photographs: 

ARANSAS PASS LIGHTHOUSE


BRAZOS RIVER LIGHT

Location: Northerly side of the Brazos River, about 1 mile inside its mouth 
Station Established: 1896
Year Current/Last Tower(s) First Lit: 1896
Operational: No
Automated: 
Deactivated: 1967
Tower Shape/Markings/Pattern: Square, pyramidal, skeleton, iron tower; brown below the gallery and black above.
Height: 98'
Original Lens: Third Order Clamshell, Fresnel
Characteristic: Flashing white every 10 seconds
Fog Horn: None

Historical Information:

Photographs: 

Brazos River Light: (75 dpi); Original caption: "BRAZOS RIVER LIGHT [;] CAMERA STATION APPROX. SOUTH OF LIGHT."; photo dated July, 1945; Photo No. "8ND #9 [;] 72"; photographer unknown.

Brazos River Light: (75 dpi) ; (300 dpi); Original caption: "BRAZOS RIVER LIGHT STA. [;] FREEPORT, TEXAS [;] Aerial-8CGD."; photo dated 11 March 1964; no photo number; photo by "Gliniecki, R. F."


BRAZOS SANTIAGO LIGHT

Location: Brazos Santiago Pass, Padre Island
Station Established: 1853
Year Current/Last Tower(s) First Lit: 1943
Operational: No
Automated: 1939
Deactivated: 
Tower Shape/Markings/Pattern: Hexagonal screw-pile structure; dwelling, slate-color; piles, roof, and lantern, black (1903)
Height: 30' (1854); 60' (1903)
Original Lens: Fifth order Fresnel, 1854; Fourth order (1903)
Characteristic: Fixed white
Fog Horn: None

Historical Information:

Photographs: 

1879 Brazos Santiago Light: (75 dpi); no caption/date/photo number; photographer unknown; probably 1926 -- see next photo for similar view.

1879 Brazos Santiago Light: (75 dpi) ; (300 dpi); Original caption: "BRAZOS-SANTIAGO L. S., TEXAS  EIGHTH NAVAL DISTRICT (NEW ORLEANS) [;] Camera Station 100 ft. SW."; photo dated 2 March 1926; no photo number; photo by A. M. Aibilich, Asst. Supt.

1879 Brazos Santiago Light: (75 dpi) ; (300 dpi); no caption/date/photo number; photographer unknown.  Photo from shore looking out with keeper's house in foreground.

1879 Brazos Santiago Light: (75 dpi) ; (300 dpi); Original caption: "BRAZOS SANTIAGO LIGHT [;] CAMERA STATION APPROX. EAST OF LIGHT. (IN THE BACKGROUND CAN BE SEEN THE REMAINS OF THE OLD LIGHT)"; photo dated July, 1945; no photo number; photographer unknown (CGD-8 photo).

1943 Brazos Santiago Light: (75 dpi) ; (300 dpi); Original caption: "BRAZOS SANTIAGO LIGHT: Port Isabel Lifeboat Station, Port Isabel, Texas."; Photo dated January, 1955; Photo No. 8CGD 012455-13; photographer unknown.


CLOPPER'S BAR LIGHT

Location: GALVESTON BAY
Station Established: 1854
Year Current Tower(s) First Lit: N/A
Operational: No
Automated: N/A
Deactivated: 1880 & destroyed
Tower Shape/Markings/Pattern: Lantern on cottage-style screwpile structure
Height: 
Original Lens: Fifth Order, Fresnel
Characteristic: 
Fog Horn: 

Photographs: 

NONE AVAILABLE


FORT POINT LIGHT

Location: GALVESTON BAY
Station Established: 1881
Year First Lit: 1882
Operational: No 
Automated: N/A
Deactivated: 1909
Tower Shape/Markings/Pattern: White hexagonal screw-pile structure; piles, red; blinds, green; lantern and dome, black.
Height: 47' 6"
Original Lens: Fourth Order, Fresnel
Characteristic: Fixed white with three fixed red and two dark sectors.  One red sector between S. by W. 1/4 W. and SSW., a dark sector between WSW. and W. 1/4 S., a red sector between W. 3/16 N. and WNW. 1/2 W., a dark sector between WNW. 1/2 W. and NNE., and a red sector between NNE. and NNE. 1/2 E.
Fog Horn: Bell struck by hand

Historical Information:

Photographs: 

FORT POINT LIGHTHOUSE


GALVESTON JETTY LIGHT

Location: GALVESTON ISLAND/GALVESTON BAY
Station Established: 1856
Year Current Tower(s) First Lit: 1916
Operational? NO
Automated? YES
Deactivated: 1972
Foundation Materials: CONCRETE
Construction Materials: BRICK/STEEL
Tower Shape: CYLINDRICAL OCTAGONAL
Markings/Pattern: BUFF W/BLACK TRIM
Relationship to Other Structure: SEPARATE
Original Lens: THIRD ORDER, FRESNEL

Photographs: 

GALVESTON JETTY LIGHTHOUSE


HALF MOON REEF LIGHT

Location: RELOCATED FROM MATAGORDA BAY
Station Established: 1858
Year Current Tower(s) First Lit: 1858
Operational? NO
Automated? UNK
Deactivated: 1942
Foundation Materials: IRON SCREWPILE (ORIGINAL)
Construction Materials: WOOD
Tower Shape: HEXAGONAL
Markings/Pattern: WHITE W/GREEN TRIM
Relationship to Other Structure: INTEGRAL
Original Lens: FOURTH ORDER, FRESNEL

Photographs: 

HALF MOON REEF LIGHTHOUSE


LYDIA ANN LIGHT (FORMERLY ARANSAS PASS)

Location: HARBOR ISLAND/NW OF ARANSAS PASS
Station Established: 1855
Year Current Tower(s) First Lit: 1857
Operational: Private aid to navigation
Automated? NO
Deactivated: 1952
Foundation Materials: TIMBER PILING
Construction Materials: RED BRICK
Tower Shape: OCTAGONAL
Markings/Pattern: NATURAL W/BLACK LANTERN
Relationship to Other Structure: SEPARATE
Original Lens: FOURTH ORDER, FRESNEL 1857

Photographs: 

NO PHOTOGRAPH YET AVAILABLE


MATAGORDA ISLAND LIGHT

Location: MATAGORDA ISLAND/MATAGORDA BAY
Station Established: 1852
Year Current Tower(s) First Lit: 1852
Operational? YES
Automated? YES 1959
Deactivated: n/a
Foundation Materials: STONE/BRICK/CONCRETE
Construction Materials: CAST IRON PLATE/BRICK LINING
Tower Shape: CONICAL
Markings/Pattern: BLACK
Relationship to Other Structure: SEPARATE
Original Lens: THIRD ORDER 1852

Photographs: 

MATAGORDA ISLAND LIGHTHOUSE (Higher Resolution)


POINT BOLIVAR LIGHT

Location: BOLIVAR PENINSULA/GALVESTON BAY
Station Established: 1852
Year Current Tower(s) First Lit: 1873
Operational? NO
Automated? UNK
Deactivated: 1933
Foundation Materials: NATURAL/EMPLACED
Construction Materials: CAST IRON W/BRICK LINING
Tower Shape: CONICAL
Markings/Pattern: BLACK
Relationship to Other Structure: SEPARATE
Original Lens:

Photographs: 

POINT BOLIVAR LIGHTHOUSE


PORT ISABEL (POINT ISABEL) LIGHT

Location: BRAZOS SANTIAGO PASS
Station Established: 1853
Year Current Tower(s) First Lit: 1853
Operational? NO
Automated? UNK
Deactivated: 1905
Foundation Materials: NATURAL/EMPLACED
Construction Materials: BRICK
Tower Shape: CONICAL
Markings/Pattern: WHITE
Relationship to Other Structure: SEPARATE
Original Lens: 15 LAMPS, 21 REFLECTORS 1854

Historical Information:

When Fort Polk was abandoned, after the Mexican War, the site was transferred to the Treasury Department and on September 28, 1850, Congress appropriated $15,000 "for a lighthouse and beacon light at Brazos, Santiago." The tower was completed in 1852 and was lit by four lamps, 57 feet above the ground and 82 feet above sea level. By 1854 the light had 15 lamps and 21 reflectors and was visible 16 miles. A third-order lens was installed in 1857, and the fixed light was varied by flashes.

At the conclusion of the Civil War, when the southern portion of Texas was occupied by Union forces, the light station was overhauled, refitted, and relit February 22, 1866.  In 1879 the Lighthouse Board reported the tower in a dilapidated condition. During a rain it was impossible to keep the lens and lamps dry as the lantern leaked "in every direction." By 1881 a new iron lantern had been erected on the tower and the following year mineral oil lamps were fitted.  In 1887 a question as to the title of the United States to the land occupied by the light station was raised, and, upon investigation, it was found that the United States had no title to the land. It had been occupied by General Taylor as a camp and depot at the outbreak of the Mexican War. As no title to the land could be established, the light was discontinued on May 15, 1888, and the station abandoned.

Evidence was soon presented to the Lighthouse Board that a light was needed at Point Isabel and that it would be necessary to purchase land for a site at an estimated cost of $8,000. "Upon the discontinuance of the present light" the report continues "the possession of the light structures went to the owners of the land upon which they were built. These buildings are worth considerably more than the sum for which the owners offer to sell the present site, including improvements, to the United States." Congress accordingly, in 1889, appropriated $8,000 for reestablishing the light and the purchase of land on which it stood. The owner offered to sell the site on which the station was situated for $6,000 but the United States attorney reported adversely on the title and he was directed to commence proceedings in condemnation to acquire title. When the case was called for trial in 1891 the district engineer, under instructions from the Lighthouse Board, declined to turn over the requisite amount until the title had been approved by the Attorney General. The sale was finally consummated in 1894 for $5,000 and the Board reported "The purchase has at last been consummated. The title to the site is now in the Government. The light will be shown at an early day." The light was finally re-exhibited on July 15, 1895, but 10 years later, in 1905, discontinued for good. In 1927 the site was sold to the highest bidder for $2,760.

Photographs: 

PORT ISABEL LIGHTHOUSE


REDFISH BAR LIGHT

Location: ON REDFISH BAR, WESTERLY SIDE OF MIDDLE PASS THROUGH THE BAR, WESTERLY SIDE OF GALVESTON BAY
Station Established: 1854
Year First Lit: 1854
Operational: No
Automated: N/A
Deactivated: 1912
Height: 35'
Tower Shape/Markings/Pattern: White structure with red horizontal stripes. 
Original Lens: Fifth Order, Fresnel
Characteristic: 
Fog Horn: Fog bell sounded every 30 seconds

Historical Information:

Photographs: 

NONE AVAILABLE


REDFISH BAR CUT LIGHT

Location: IN 2 FEET OF WATER, ON RED FISH BAR, OFF EDWARDS POINT, GALVESTON BAY, CLOSE TO THE EASTERLY SIDE OF THE DREDGED CUT THROUGH THE BAR
Station Established: 1900
Year First Lit: 1900
Operational: No
Automated: N/A
Deactivated: 1936
Height: 39'
Tower Shape/Markings/Pattern: Brown, square, crew-pile foundation surmounted by a square white dwelling; lantern, black.
Original Lens: Fifth Order, Fresnel
Characteristic: Fixed white
Fog Horn: Bell struck by machinery every 30 seconds.

Historical Information:

Photographs: 

REDFISH BAR CUT LIGHT


SABINE BANK LIGHT

Location: IN 18 FEET OF WATER 16.25 MILES SSE OF SABINE PASS
Station Established: 1904
Year First Lit: 1906
Operational: Yes
Automated: 1923
Deactivated: Original tower removed in 2001; skeleton tower now in operation.
Tower Shape/Markings/Pattern: Red, cylindrical, foundation (caisson) pier, expanding in trumpet shape at its upper end to form a gallery, surmounted by a red, conical tower with a black, cylindrical lantern, the tower surrounded near its base by red, conical gallery roof.
Height: 72'
Original Lens: Third Order, Fresnel
Characteristic: Fixed white
Fog Horn: Third-class Daboll trumpet; blasts 5 seconds, silent intervals 25 seconds.

Historical Information:

Photographs: 

SABINE BANK LIGHTHOUSE


Download Plug-Ins
Download Plug-Ins: Some of the links on this page require a plug-in to view them. Links to the plug-ins are available below.
Click Here to Download Adobe Acrobat Reader Adobe Acrobat Reader (PDF)
Last Modified 1/26/2012