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Name: Wood Island Light  

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Nearest Town or City:
Biddeford Pool, Maine, United States

Location: Mouth of the Saco River.

Click to enlarge: Photo    Large photo
Photo: Jeremy D'Entremont
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Managing Organization:
American Lighthouse Foundation (Friends of Wood Island Lighthouse Chapter)

Telephone: 207-646-0245


Contact Address Information:
P. O. Box 26
Biddeford Pool
Maine, 04006, United States

In 1972 Wood Island Light's lantern was removed and a rotating aerobeacon was installed. A lantern was returned and a smaller optic was installed in 1986. The lighthouse and dwelling are now licensed to the American Lighthouse Foundation (ALF). A chapter of ALF, the Friends of Wood Island Lighthouse, is working for the restoration and preservation of the buildings.

Tower Height: 47

Height of Focal Plane: 71

Characteristic and Range: Alternating white and green flashes every 10 seconds.

Description of Tower: Conical white stone tower with black cast iron lantern.

This light is operational

Other Buildings?
1857 two story wood keeper's house, 1903 oil house, storage building.

Earlier Towers?
1808: 45-foot octagonal pyramidal wooden tower. 1839: 45-foot conical granite tower.

Date Established: 1808

Date Present Tower Built: 1858

Date Automated: 1986

Optics: 1858: Fourth order Fresnel lens; 1972: rotating aerobeacon; now VRB-25.

Fog Signal: Fog bell in pyramidal tower (bell is now on display at Vine's Landing in Biddeford Pool); now automated horn with two blasts every 30 seconds.

Current Use: Active aid to navigation.

Open To Public? No.

North or south on ME 9: Turn onto ME 208 (Bridge Road). At a T-intersection turn left. Continue through Biddeford. Just before the road turns right into Ocean Avenue, there is a closed vehicular gate on the left. Off-road parking is permitted near the gate. Walk through the pedestrian entry to a path. The path leads to the shore; the lighthouse can be seen after a 0.3 mile walk, some of which is slightly uphill and rocky. Bring your binoculars; the view is fairly distant. Also, the Friends of Wood Island Lighthouse (FOWIL) are now offering tours of Wood Island Light Station. The Light Runner departs Vines Landing in Biddeford Pool at 6 p.m. on Wednesdays, 1 p.m. & 2 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. The trip and tour take about two hours. There is no cost but donations are appreciated. The boat takes 17-18 adults. The trips are first come, first served. FOWIL members receive priority until 15 minutes before boarding. Participants tour the house and see inside the tower, but at present climbing the tower is not part of the tour. Extra trips for groups are possible depending on availability of boat and crew; contact Sheri Poftak for more information at

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places

Keepers: Benjamin Cole (1808-1809); Philip Goldthwaite (1809-1832); Tristam Goldthwaite (1832-1833); Abraham Norwood (1833-1841); John Adams (1841-?); Stephen D. Batchelder (1849-?); Nathaniel Varrell (185?); L.F. Varrell (185?); Joseph R. Bryant (1854-1861?) ; Ebenezer Emerson (1861-1865); Edwin Tarbox (1865- 1872); Albert Norwood (1872-1886); Thomas Henry Orcutt (1886-1905); Charles A. Burke (1905-1914); C.B. Staples (1914-1917); W. F. Lurvey (1917-1923); Albert Staples (1923-1926); George Woodward (1927-1934); Earle Benson (Lighthouse Service 1934-1939, Coast Guard 1939-1942) U.S. COAST GUARD: EN3 Edward G. Frank (1952-1956); BM2 Forrest S. Cheney (1952); BM3 Edwin R. Duquette (1952); SN R. M. Sawtelle (1952-1954); John Rogers (Rodgers?) (c. 1948); BM2 Gerald E. Ryan (1957); EN3 David G. Crider (1957); EN3 Harrison E. Parker (1957); BM3 David A Katon (1957-1959); FN Bruce A. Creswell (1958); SN Richard M. Gramlich (1958); SN Constantine H. Szczechowicz (1958, 1961); EN2 Laurier Burnham (1959-1963); Edward J. Conner (1959); SN Spencer N. Graham (1959-1960); BM1 Lee Merrick (1960); Raymond E. Bill, Sr. (1961); ENS Bryon H. Stauffer (1961); BM1 James E. Murray (1961); SA Alan L. George (1961-1962); Wasil W. Johnson (1962); BM3 Frank D. Harmon (1962); SN Martin P. Hass (1962); BM1 Jack B. Netherwood (1962-1963); Roger O. Shaw (1962-1963); EN2 David Winchester (1963-1964); SNCS James Willis (1963-1964); SN Clifton M. Wood (1963-1964); EN2 David P. Bichrest (1964-1967); George Tevis (sp?) (1965); Perley or Peiley Aprague (1965, 1968); John P. Reidy (1966); BM3 A.J. Savageau (sp?) (1967-1968); BM2 Ronald A. Handfield (1968); EN2 James J. Roche (1968-1969); Clifford Trebilcock (1970-1972); Andrew Preneau (1972); Jerry Murray (1973-1976); Michael McQuade (1976-1979); Russ Lowell (1979-1982); Phillip Brothwell (1983-1985); Merton Perry (1986); Warren Rowell (1986).


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