Ambrose Lightship Damage
The Ambrose Lightship LV 111/WAL 533 is shown here at the U. S. Lighthouse Service Lighthouse Depot in Staten Island, New York with the damage the ship suffered after being struck by the Grace Line passenger liner S. S. Santa Barbara on September 13, 1935. The captain of the lightship said at the time that he was forced to ram the ocean liner in order to save the lightship from otherwise being most likely sliced in half. In 1932 the LV 111/WAL 533 had replaced the LV 87/ WAL 512 on the Ambrose Station. After repairs, the LV 111/ WAL 533 continued to serve on the Ambrose Channel off the entrance to New York Bay (as shown in the other photo), until 1952 when it was moved to Maine and became the Portland Lightship.
Lighting the Lightship
It is believed that this original 1939 Associated Press photo in the archives of Lighthouse Digest was taken on board the LV 118/ WAL 539, which served as the Cornfield Lightship off Cornfield Point Connecticut from 1938 to 1957. This nicely detailed night-time image clearly shows a lightship crewman high up the tubular mast while lighting the lantern. Later, the access ladder was enclosed with protective hoops. From 1958 to 1962 this vessel served as the Cross Rip Lightship in Massachusetts, and from 1962 to 1972 it was the Boston Lightship. After it was decommissioned on November 9, 1972, it was donated to the Lewes Historical Society in Lewes, Delaware and renamed the Overfalls Lightship, although it never served under that name. Today the lightship is managed by the Overfalls Foundation as a museum that, in season, is open to the public.
Montauk Lighthouse Fog Horns
This very old and original cabinet photo in the archives of Lighthouse Digest are what appear to be Brown’s Fog Siren Horn Trumpets that were once in use at the Montauk Lighthouse in New York. Unfortunately, we don’t know the year when this now historic photo was taken. Perhaps one of our readers can supply us with additional information.
Motor Boating 1911
It was not uncommon for magazines to take out advertising for themselves in other magazines, as is evident by this 1911 advertisement for Motor Boating magazine that was taken out in Cosmopolitan. The advertising for Motor Boating used an image of a lighthouse in a very clever way to promote their magazine. Old paper items such as this are now hard to find, and make for desirable collectibles among many lighthouse aficionados. Once framed, they are protected and make great décor for a home or office.
Jack’s Lighthouse Gas Station
Although this old real photo post card is a little beat up, it clearly shows Jack’s Lighthouse Gas Station that stood at 700 Atlantic Boulevard at Route A1A and 10 in Atlantic Beach, Florida. One sign says “Gas for Less,” and the vertical sign on the faux lighthouse towers says, “Save with Colonial.” This was from the early days of automobile tourism when gas and service stations used all kinds of clever architectural designs to attract customers, something that, for the most part, is sorely lacking in today’s fast-passed society where so much uniqueness has been lost.
This vintage advertisement for Beacon Shoes promoted their men’s dress shoes for $3.00 per pair, saying that they were a “Guiding Light To Shoe Buyers,” and encouraging people to send for their free catalogue Beacon Light. A number of rare advertisement items, including a lighted sign from Beacon Shoes, can be found on display at the Maine Lighthouse Museum in Rockland, Maine.
A Step Back in Time
Old images like this one showing vintage automobiles near a lighthouse are priceless. Travelling to visit lighthouses in those days was always an adventure, but you could always find great food at small cafes like this one that once dotted our nation’s roadways. Behind the Gulf Café is the Port Isabel Lighthouse in Port Isabel, Texas.
This story appeared in the
Sep/Oct 2016 edition of Lighthouse Digest Magazine. The print edition contains more stories than our internet edition, and each story generally contains more photographs - often many more - in the print edition. For subscription information about the print edition, click here.
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