Three Historic Lenses from Delaware Bay

Thanks to Bob Trapani, then of the Delaware River and Bay Lighthouse Foundation, for supplying these photos. Bob is now Executive Director of the American Lighthouse Foundation.

This third order Fresnel lens, from the Brandywine Shoal Light, is shown as it appears on display at the Tucker's Island Lighthouse replica in Tuckerton, New Jersey.

This fourth order lens is still mounted in the lantern of the Delaware Breakwater Light at Lewes. This light is no longer used for navigation, but it remains active for decorative purposes. The aluminum foil and blue wrap prevent the light from being seen by shipping. The lighthouse is owned by the Delaware River and Bay Authority and can be seen from boats of the Cape May-Lewes Ferry as they arrive or depart.

This fourth order lens is still in use in the Miah Maull Shoal Light; the light shows a red light over the shoals to the northwest of the ship channel. There is a proposal to remove this lens for display at the East River Light near Heislerville, New Jersey, once the restoration of that historic lighthouse is completed.

All photos copyright 2001 Bob Trapani; used by permission.

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January 31, 2002. Checked and revised June 1, 2017. Site copyright 2017 Russ Rowlett and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.