Digest>Archives> October 2006

Coffin Island Lighthouse To Be Demolished


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If you look closely, you will notice in this 1991 ...
Photo by: E. H. Irwin

The Canadian government has decided that Nova Scotia’s Coffin Island Lighthouse will have to be demolished.

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Coffin Island is shown here getting a new coat of ...
Photo by: E. H. Irwin

When the Coffin Island Light Station was established in 1812, it was the first lighthouse to be built in Nova Scotia. That lighthouse lasted until 1914 when the tower that stands there today was constructed.

The island lighthouse has suffered from deterioration since 1961 when it was automated and the keeper’s house

was demolished.

Barry MacDonald, president of the Nova Scotia Lighthouse Society, said that because of the tricky currents of the area and bad storms over the years, the island has had on ongoing problem with erosion.

The Coffin Island Heritage Society mounted what they thought was a successful campaign to save the lighthouse when they completed a wall of stone around the lighthouse

in 1999. However, the lighthouse is now again so close to

the shoreline that it is now on the brink of falling over and apparently cannot be moved.

Canadian government officials said they will build a fiberglass replica of the lighthouse with a modern optic, which will stand further from the eroding shoreline. The actual beacon in the old tower will be removed and placed on display on the mainland before the historic Coffin Island Lighthouse is demolished.

Again, another historic North American lighthouse will have disappeared into the pages of time.

This story appeared in the October 2006 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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