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Home | Lighthouse Map | North Carolina | Price's Creek Range Front

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Lighthouse History

Built: 1849

Type: Conical Brick Tower

Height: 20 feet

Status: Non-Active

Location: West Side of Cape Fear River

Deactivated: 1861

Lens: Eight lamps and eight 14-inch reflectors - Replaced Sixth Order Fresnel with fixed white light

Keepers: 1849 John Bell 

Notes: The sister light, located around 700-800 feet upriver, served as keepers quarters. It was a larger, square, brick structure with a lantern room on top and an overall height of 35 feet. Although the first person appointed as keeper was Samuel C. Mason, for some reason he never took up the post, and John Bell worked as the first keeper. 
During the early part of the Civil War, when they served to guide daring Confederate blockade runners past the Union ships stationed offshore. The Confederate army turned the brick keeper's house into a signal station, which provided communication between Fort Caswell and Fort Fisher. The Union eventually did gain complete control of the coast, forcing the Confederates to retreat inland. Rather than let the lighthouses remain for the enemy, Confederate soldiers dismantled or destroyed as many lights as they could.
The lighthouses along the Cape Fear River never recovered from the war.  By the end of the century, the rear range light at Price's Creek had sustained such storm damage that it was torn down and the bricks hauled off and used by locals. Now none of the river lights remain except the front range light at Price's Creek, which is in a state of disrepair. 
This lighthouse was basically forgotten until it was rediscovered in the 1980s. The property on which the lighthouse stands today belongs to Archer Daniels Midland Company.
There is no public access to the lighthouse.  The lighthouse is best viewed from the Southport-Fort Fisher ferry, which passes near the lighthouse a few minutes after leaving Southport.  For more information, call 1-800BYFERRY

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