Like giant sentinels standing guard, California's lighthouses keep silent vigils over the turbulent waters of the Pacific. In 1850, Congress appropriated funds to build eight lighthouses on the West Coast, and three years later, construction began on the project. The first lighthouse to become operational on the West Coast was that on Alcatraz Island on June 1, 1854. While the other seven were being completed, Congress authorized funds to construct a second set of eight lighthouses, and by 1930, California boasted 40 light stations. This new photographic history contains over 200 rare and beautiful images featuring lighthouses of the South Coast, San Francisco Bay, and the North Coast, as well as lightships and support facilities.
Author Bio: Most of the photographs in this book were taken by former Lighthouse Service employee Irving Conklin during the period from 1929 to 1932, although a few other photos from the society archives or other sources have been included to illustrate certain points. This book depicts lighthouse life in a quieter era-a time when our keepers were thankful to have a secure means of employment and kept the lights burning to protect the continuous parade of ships plying the waters along California's rugged coastline.
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