Rebecca Shoal Lighthouse

West of Key West, Florida - 1886 (1886**)

Photo of the Rebecca Shoal Lighthouse.

History of the Rebecca Shoal Lighthouse

The Rebecca Shoals lie about 43 miles west of Key West, Florida. This shoal is about 11' deep completely surrounded by deep water. This is how a navigational nightmare is made for mariners. It is also in this area that the Atlantic and the Gulf of Mexico meet.

It would take several attempts to build a lighthouse here. The first three attempts were washed away in severe weather. General George Meade eventually succeeded in creating a seventy five foot tall lighted tower much like the one in the picture above. Several years later, it was removed in favor of an actual lighthouse. It was a house with a beacon through the roof sitting on an iron-pile foundation.

The lighthouse was automated in 1925 and the house was removed from the site in 1953. A tower replaced the house that displayed the light 60' above sea level. The tower was later replaced with the light displayed in the picture above. It houses a 250mm optic and flashes ever 6 seconds. Its effective range is 9 miles.

Here is a picture of the Original Rebecca Shoal Lighthouse from the US Coast Guard Archives.

Directions: This lighthouse sits off shore quite a ways. We passed the light on the Yankee Freedom II trip to Dry Tortugas National Park. This is the best way to view this light.

View more Rebecca Shoal Lighthouse pictures
Tower Information
Tower Height: 68.00'
Focal Plane: 66'
Active Aid to Navigation: Deactivated (1953)
*Latitude: 24.57800 N
*Longitude: -82.58500 W
See this lighthouse on Google Maps.


* Please note that all GPS coordinates are approximated and are meant to put you in the vicinity of the lighthouse, not for navigation purposes.

** This year denotes a station date. This is the year that a lighthouse was first reported in the vicinity or at that location.

All photographs and information on this site is copyright © 2016 Bryan Penberthy unless otherwise specified. No content may be used without written permission. Any questions or comments, please email me.