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Goose Rocks Light
Goose Rocks Light.jpg
US Coast Guard photo
Goose Rocks Light is located in Maine
Goose Rocks Light
Goose Rocks Light
Location in Maine
Location North Haven, Maine
Coordinates 44°8′7.5″N 68°49′50.4″W / 44.135417°N 68.830667°W / 44.135417; -68.830667
Year first constructed 1890
Automated 1963
Foundation cast iron and concrete caisson
Construction cast iron
Tower shape sparkplug
Markings / pattern white with black base and trim
Focal height
Original lens 4th order Fresnel
Current lens 9.8 inches (250 mm)
Range 12 nautical miles (22 km; 14 mi) & 11 nautical miles (20 km; 13 mi)
Characteristic Fl W 6s with R sector
Fog signal HORN: 1 every 10s
USCG number 1-3885

Goose Rocks Light is a sparkplug lighthouse located near North Haven, Maine in Penobscot Bay. It stands at the eastern entrance to the Fox Islands Thoroughfare, a busy mile-wide passage separating North Haven from Vinalhaven. Built in 1890, it was added to the National Register of Historic Places as Goose Rocks Light Station on January 21, 1988. The structure is now privately owned by a preservation group, and remains an active aid to navigation.

Description and history

The Maine town of North Haven occupies a large eponymous island in the south center of Penobscot Bay. The island is studded with inlets and peninsulas, and is just north of Vinalhaven, the other major island of the Fox Islands group, from which it is separated by the Fox Island Thoroughfare. Goose Rocks is a ledge roughly between Stimpson Island (part of North Haven) and Widows Island (part of Vinalhaven) at the eastern end of the Thoroughfare. It is a sparkplug lighthouse, a four-level tapered structure with walls of cast iron plating set on a concrete base. The second level of the structure serves as the keeper's quarters, with the lantern house as the fourth stage. The tower is painted white, with a black base and trim.

The light station was established in 1890, at a time when Vinalhaven was the site of major granite quarries, and both communities were attracting a significant number of summer visitors. The light was automated in 1963. Declared surplus in the 1990s, a proposal was first floated to turn the building over to the town of North Haven, but this was never realized. In 2006 it was sold to the non-profit Beacon Preservation organization. The light itself is maintained by the Coast Guard, and remains an active aid to navigation.

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