Life at Cape Flattery Lighthouse

Ten years later Captain John Meares controlled to verify the existence of the Strait of Juan de Fuca whilst he visited a small island that sits approximately a half of mile off Cape Flattery. There he met Tatooche, chief of the Makah Indians. He named the island after Chief Tatooche. The leader used the island as his base at some point of summers whilst he hunted whales and stuck salmon.

In 1850 William McArthur had just completed surveying the west coast and advocated a lighthouse be installed on Tatooche Island. In this way the vessels could input the strait at night time and not have to wait until daytime. In 1854 Congress turned into satisfied to allocate $39,000 to build lighthouses on Tatoosh Island and on New Dungeness Spit. The government had paid $30,000 for all of the Makah’s traditional lands except for a small reservation at Neah Bay.

The Makah Indians had been quite irritated with the white folks that bought their land and gave the construction crew a hostile reception. This turned into due to the fact several hundred of the Indians had been killed via a virulent disease of smallpox in 1853 delivered on via the sickness bearing “Bostons”. During the summer time the Indians persevered to apply the island for fishing and whale hunting. In order to shield themselves the construction crew constructed a blockhouse of hard-hewn timbers earlier than they began production at the lighthouse. There become usually one member of the crew on shield responsibility however there have been no greater issues with the Indians other than a few lacking equipment and substances.

On December 28, 1857 the first-order Louis Sauter Fresnel lens mild turned into first illuminated inside the sixty-six foot tower of Cape Flattery lighthouse. This tower became taller than maximum of the Cape-Cod-Style lighthouses. Its white light had a focal plane 162 toes above the sea. Cape Flattery lighthouse became the fourteenth set up at the west coast.

The pay for a lighthouse keeper was poor and the weather situations have been miserable.Causing many keepers to renounce. In 1861 there was a traveler to the island who noticed the rundown situation of the lighthouse. He saw the leaky roof and the moss growing on internal walls. Wind even blew across the chimney inflicting smoke to invade the residing quarters. The keepers have been provided with more gasoline and the district engineer became commanded to find a everlasting answer.

In 1873, after numerous years of deplorable situations and inept keepers, the lighthouse living turned into declared “now not healthy to be occupied” as the partitions have been moldy all 12 months long. Congress appropriated $18,000 to construct a brand new duplex with six rooms on every side. The rooms within the lighthouse which have been previously keepers quarters have been now getting used for garage.