Digest>Archives> Nov/Dec 2021

Spindly-Legged Doomsday List Light Gets New Owner


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Swimmers on their way to Alligator Reef ...
Photo by: Don Summerville

Under the National Historic Lighthouse Preservation Act, ownership of Florida’s endangered Alligator Reef Lighthouse has been awarded to the nonprofit Friends of the Pool, Inc.

Built in 1873, the Alligator Reef Lighthouse was automated in 1963. In 2005, it was deactivated and abandoned and left to the elements.

In September of 2015, the Alligator Reef Lighthouse was placed on the Lighthouse Digest Doomsday List of Endangered Lighthouses. Agreeing with our assessment, the lighthouse is also listed as one of “The Most Endangered Historic Properties” in Florida by the Florida Trust for Historic Preservation.

Friends of the Pool, Inc. hosts an annual eight-mile swimming race to the lighthouse and back to fund college scholarships. The idea to have the nonprofit lead the effort to save the lighthouse was conceived by Larry Herlth, known by many as “Lighthouse Larry,” who is a metal artisan who has created detailed replicas of the Alligator Reef Lighthouse and other lighthouses.

Ron Dixon of Friends of the Pool stated that restoration of the Alligator Reef Lighthouse would probably take five to seven years to complete and cost upwards of $9 million.

This story appeared in the Nov/Dec 2021 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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