An iron bell buoy was placed near the ledges called the Graves in 1854. The opening of the Broad Sound Channel in the early 1900s necessitated a lighthouse. Graves Light took two years to build. For many years the light was the most powerful in New England. The station has been damaged by many storms; today only the lighthouse and oil house remain. The lighthouse was sold to private owners, Dave and Lynn Waller, in a GSA auction in August 2013 for $933,888.
Tower Height: 113
Height of Focal Plane: 98
Characteristic and Range: Two white flashes every 12 seconds, visible for 15 nautical miles, lighted 24 hours.
Description of Tower: Unpainted conical granite tower with black cast iron lantern.
This light is operational
1905 oil house.
Date Established: 1905
Date Present Tower Built: 1905
Date Automated: 1976
Optics: 1905: First order Fresnel lens; 2001: VRB-25, solar powered. Fresnel lens is now at the Smithsonian Institution (in storage).
Fog Signal: Originally Daboll fog trumpet; now automated horn with two blasts every 20 seconds.
Current Use: Active aid to navigation.
Open To Public? No.
Graves Light can be seen from Winthrop Beach, as well as Nantasket Beach in Hull. It is best seen from the water. The Friends of the Boston Harbor Islands provide periodic cruises that go near Graves Light; call (781) 740-4290. Boat access to the lighthouse is difficult; crews working at the station usually arrive by helicopter.
Mapquest URL: Click here to get a map to this lighthouse!
Listed on the
National Register of Historic Places
Keepers: Elliott C. Hadley (1905-1911); Elliott C. Hadley, Jr. (second assistant, 1908-1912, first assistant,1912-?); Robert M. McAfee (second assistant, 1906-1907, first assistant, 1907-1912); Thomas J. Creed (second assistant, 1909-1910); George L. Lyon (1911-?); William Anderson, Jr/ (second assistant, 1912-?); Henry Towle (c. 1914-1917); Harry Whin (First Assistant, c. 1915-1917); Bill Baldwin (Second assistant keeper, c. 1916); ? Carter (c.1917-1924); Octavius Reamy (assistant 1906-1907, keeper 1924-at least 1939); Allison Gregg Haskins (c. 1920s); Llewellyn Rogers (c. 1930s); George J. Fitzpatrick (first assistant, c. 1935); Raymond Burton (U.S. Coast Guard, c. 1945); Bernard Brady (Coast Guard, c. 1945); Robert H. Curran (U.S. Coast Guard, c. 1945); Charles Sidney Martin (U.S. Coast Guard, c. 1950); Gene Calmon (U.S. Coast Guard, 1952); ? Delany (U.S. Coast Guard, c. 1961); Larry Crouse (U.S. Coast Guard, 1961); ? Newman (U.S. Coast Guard, c. 1961); John Mariani (U.S. Coast Guard, c. 1961); ? Cookson (U.S. Coast Guard, c. 1962); Larry Bowers (U.S. Coast Guard, 1961-1963); Stephen Downey (Coast Guard, c. 1967), Edward Widborg (U.S. Coast Guard, c. 1966-1967), ? Butler (U.S. Coast Guard, c. 1966-1967), Allan Leto (U.S. Coast Guard, c. 1968), James Kreiger (U.S. Coast Guard, c. 1968), Pat Faiella (U.S. Coast Guard, c. 1970), Douglas Smart (Coast Guard, c. 1971), Sheldon Kaminsky (Coast Guard, 1970-1971), Pedro Marticio (?-1976).