National Museum of American History, Behring Center

Lighthouse Postcards

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Key West postcard face - click to enlarge

Key West postcard obverse - click to enlarge

Locate on NOAA nautical chart

Key West

State: FL
Year established: 1825
Latitude: 24 deg 33 min 2 sec N
Longitude: 81 deg 48 min 3 sec W
Height above sea level: 100 feet

Original construction:
65-foot brick tower

1849: 45-foot conical masonry lighthouse built 1/2-mile inland to replace the earlier tower destroyed by 1846 hurricane
1873: top of lighthouse raised by 5 feet to top of tower
1894: tower raised 20 feet

automated in 1915 (using acetylene system); electrified in 1934; deactivated in 1969; acquired by Monroe County in 1972; restored in 1988 by the Key West Art and Historical Society

More information:
Holland Jr., F. Ross, America's Lighthouses: Their Illustrated History Since 1716, (Brattleboro, VT: The Stephen Greene Press, 1972), p. 133
McCarthy, Kevin, Florida Lighthouses, (Gainsville, FL: University of Florida Press, 1990), pp. 69-72