Lighthouses of the Republic of the Congo
There are two central African nations named for the Congo
River: the Republic of the Congo and the Democratic
Republic of the Congo. Both nations have been independent since 1960.
The Republic of
the Congo, sometimes called Congo (Brazzaville), is the former French
Congo. Located entirely north of the
Congo River, it has only a short coastline, about 170 km (105 mi) in
length. However, this coast includes the major port of Pointe Noire.
To avoid the falls on the lower Congo, goods to and from all of central
Africa are shipped by rail between Pointe Noire and Brazzaville, which
is on the river above the falls.
Aids to navigation in the Republic of
the Congo are maintained by the Pointe Noire port authority (Port
Autonome de Pointe Noire).
ARLHS numbers are from the ARLHS World List of Lights.
Admiralty numbers are from volume D of the Admiralty List of Lights & Fog
Signals. U.S. NGA List numbers are from Publication 113.
- General Sources
- World of Lighthouses - Congo Brazzaville
- Photos by various photographers available from Lightphotos.net.
- Online List of Lights - Congo
- Photos by various photographers posted by Alexander Trabas.
Leuchttürme auf historischen Postkarten
- Postcards from the collection of Klaus Huelse.
- Lighthouses in Africa
- Postcards from the collection of Michel Forand.
Pointe Noire Light, Pointe Noire, May 2010
photo copyright Fabrice Moustic; permission requested
- * Djeno
- Date unknown (modern). Active; focal plane 29 m (95 ft); white or red light, depending on direction, 3 s on, 1 s off. This light is almost certainly mounted on a 38 m (125 ft) triangular skeletal communications tower. Many photos of the tower are available, and Google has a satellite view. Located at the Djeno oil terminal, about 25 km (15 mi) southeast of Pointe Noire. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS CON-001; Admiralty D4319; NGA 25484.
- Pointe Noire Passe Ouest (Inner Breakwater)
- Date unknown. Active; focal plane 10 m (33 ft); continuous green light. Light mounted on a 25 m (82 ft) square cylindrical white harbor control tower. Vesseltracker.com has a photo by Jerzy Nowak, but Google has only a fuzzy satellite view. Located on a pier on the west side of the harbor entrance. Site and tower closed. Admiralty D4314; NGA 25476.
- 1927. Active; focal plane 27 m (89 ft); white flash every 5 s. 20 m (66
ft) octagonal concrete tower with lantern and gallery. The lighthouse has
an unusual design, as seen in Fabrice Moustic's photo above. Tower painted
white, with two black horizontal bands; lantern painted black. 1-story keeper's
house. Franz-Luitpold Kessler has a closeup photo,
Huelse has a historic postcard
view, and Google has a satellite
view. Lightphotos.net has a historic photo of the lighthouse under construction in 1925-26. The lighthouse was repainted in early 2010. Located at the southern end of the Baie de Pointe Noire, on the
west side of the city, near the base of the peninsula sheltering the harbor.
Site status unknown (the area may be restricted; inquire locally). ARLHS CON-002; Admiralty D4311; NGA 25452.
- * Pointe Noire Cathédrale (Feu Postérieur)
- Date unknown (the building was completed in 1953). Active; focal plane 40 m (131 ft); two continuous red lights,
displayed side by side. Lights mounted on the steeple of the Cathédrale
Notre-Dame de l'Assomption. Kim Do Young has a photo of the cathedral, Wikimedia has Loris Romito's photo, and Google has a satellite
view. Forand has a postcard view in which it appears that the lights are on the left side of the open portion at the top of the tower. The range was discontinued sometime around 2010. This was the rear light of the harbor entrance range; the front light
was at the west end of a detached breakwater protecting the harbor. Located
at the southern end of the Baie de Pointe Noire, 1.4 km (0.9 mi) southeast
of the lighthouse. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty D4315.1; NGA 25464.
Information available on lost lighthouses:
Indienne (1897- ?). This was a round cylindrical
brick tower with lantern and gallery. Pointe Indienne is a prominent cape
about 30 km (19 mi) northwest of Pointe Noire. Sailing directions for the
African coast say that ruins of the lighthouse are visible on the point, but
a Bing satellite view shows no trace of the light station. It may have been lost to beach erosion. ARLHS CON-003.
Notable faux lighthouses:
Adjoining pages: North: Gabon | South: Angola
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Posted September 16, 2005. Checked and revised December 23, 2017.
Lighthouses: 4. Site copyright 2017 Russ Rowlett and the University of North
Carolina at Chapel Hill.