American Shoal
Cyberlights Lighthouses - American Shoal  

American Shoal Quick Facts

Year Station Established: 1880

Is the Light operational? Yes

Year Light First Lit: 1880

Year Automated: 1963

Shape: Octagonal Skeletal

Tower Height: 109   ft.

Original Optic: 1st Order, Fresnel

Present Optic: VRB-25, Solar

Existing Keepers Quarters? Yes
     Year Constructed: 1880
      Number of Stories: 2
      Architectural Style: Victorian
      Construction Materials: Cast Iron

         Cyberlights Lighthouses

American Shoal Lighthouse
Near Sugarloaf Key, Florida

Cyberlights Lighthouses - American Shoal Lighthouse

[Photo 2]

Last Visited: January, 2001

As early as 1851 plans were made for the erection of a series of great offshore lighthouses to mark the dangerous Florida Reef. These towers, all of skeleton iron construction, to resist hurricanes, were eventually built one at a time over a period of years, that on American Shoal completed in 1880, being the most recently constructed. The ironwork for this light was fabricated in the North, and along with other necessary supplies and materials, was shipped to Key West, which was made the base of operations. The site of the lighthouse was 15 miles to the eastward, on the outermost reefs, and was covered with 4 feet of water. Construction continued for about two years, and the tower was first lighted on the night of July 15, 1880, and has since helped to bring about a substantial reduction in the number of shipwrecks occurring along this dangerous coast. The light is 109 feet above the water, and is visible on a clear night for 16 miles.

Source: Florida Lighthouse Page

Latitude/Longitude: 24.491523,-81.465111

Nearest Address: 14600 Old State Road 4a, Upper Sugarloaf Key, FL

  • The best viewing point of American Shoal Lighthouse from land is at Sugarloaf Beach.
  • Take Route 1 to Route 939 in Sugarloaf Shores.
  • Continue on 939 until you see Route 939A to the right. Take a right onto 939A.
  • This will take you to Sugarloaf beach, where you can park and walk out to the beach to see the lighthouse in the distance.

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