Seven miles northeast of Orient Point, where Block Island Sound and Long
Island Sound meet.
Original structure: 50 foot
Present structure: 81
feet, 350mm light, granite tower has 19 foot diameter at base, with walls 5
1/2 feet thick.
1803: Great Gull and Little Gull
are purchased by the government for $800.
1804: Original light constructed
for $15,000 with the hopes of ending the loss of ships and lives in The
1807: A wall was erected on the
northwest corner of the island.
1815, September 23: A hurricane
hits the island while the keeper is ashore. His wife and four children ride
out the storm, which caused a loss of land at the tiny island. During the
storm, much of the island was swept away. the water approached within four
feet of the tower, and the dwelling was so undermined half of it hung over
1817, May-August: A wall is built
around the light to help hold back the seas which have begun to undermine
the keeper's quarters. One of the workers on the light will later become the
local Superintendent of Light-Houses.
1857: A Third Order lens is
installed in the lantern.
1869: Present structure
constructed, and a Second Order lens is installed.
1977 or 1978: Automated.
1995: Second Order lens moved to
the East End Seaport Maritime Museum in Greenport.
use: Active aid to navigation.
surrounding area: Little Gull and Great Gull lie between
Plum Island and Fisher's Island, where the Atlantic Ocean meets the Long
access? No. But you view it from one of the several cruises
that visit it each year.
know of no lights with a similar design.
The Little Gull Lighthouse viewed from the
June 5, 1999. Note the unusual red roof.
The light as we turn into The Race.
This Second Order Fresnel lens was removed
from Little Gull Island and brought to the East End Seaport Maritime Museum
in 1995. The lens was brought in pieces and took volunteers about one month
to reassemble. To give you an idea of the size of this lens, the fine
looking young fellow next to it is six feet tall. Note the Fourth Order lens
to the left.
Looking up into the lens.