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Travel Time 1.5 hrs each way

Perhaps the most photographed lighthouse in The Chesapeake Bay, The Thomas Point Shoal Lighthouse is the last screwpile structure left on its original site in the bay. It went into service on November 27, 1875, to replace a light on the shore at Thomas Point at the entrance to the South River. The Lighthouse Board thought that a light on the shoal would better serve the shipping traffic in the bay. A screwpile with a hexagonal 1-1/2-story building perched on the spidery legs, the light's lantern rises out of the center of the building. During its early years floating ice tipped over the fourth-order lens in the lantern. In time heavy riprap was placed around the lighthouse to fend off the ice. With its red roof and white sides this picturesque lighthouse is a fine example of its type. The light and fog signal, both now automated, are still active.

The fourth-order Fresnel lens was made by "L. Sautter & Co" and consisted of four panels with five fixed elements in each panel of the central drum lens with five fixed prisms in each panel above the central drum and three fixed prisms in each panel below the central drum. This lens has been removed and is located in the Commander's Office, U.S. Coast Guard Activities, Baltimore. A 300mm acrylic lens sits on the original cast-iron pedestal. There are two backup 250mm acrylic lenses mounted on the roof, one on the southwest side and one on the northeast side. Both have two red sectors to match the lantern room. Access to the lantern level gallery is through an original cast-iron half door. The gallery deck is made of flat seam sheet metal. The gallery wooden railing is identical in design to the lower gallery rail. A smokestack through the roof is located on the southwest side.