About 50 miles north of Los Angeles, California once stood a beautiful Victorian-style building that once guarded shipping through the Santa Barbara Channel, which runs between the California coast and the Channel Islands.
The original Point Hueneme Lighthouse was a near twin to Point Fermin and East Brothers Lighthouses in California, Point Adams Lighthouse in Oregon and Hereford Inlet Lighthouse in New Jersey. In the late 1930s and early 1940s, when a new harbor was created, the entrance to the new harbor would have been dangerously close to the lighthouse. Then it was decided that the old lighthouse would be sold and a new lighthouse would be built.
The lighthouse was purchased from the government for $51 and moved to become part of a proposed yacht club. The lantern room and lens were removed from the old tower to be used in the new tower.
A house mover, John R. Brakey, was hired to move the lighthouse by barge, an operation that was completed in February of 1940.
In 1942, during the height of World War II, the U.S. Navy took over Hueneme Harbor and the surrounding area. By now, the lighthouse, having been totally neglected, was in a total state of disrepair and the once beautiful light station was demolished.
The second Point Hueneme Lighthouse still stands today as an active aid to navigation. It is open to the public from 10AM to 3PM on the third Saturday of each month. Today, the Port Hueneme Chamber of Commerce and Historical Museum has displays on the history of the light station. For more information, you can call them at (805) 488-2023.
This story appeared in the
November 2005 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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