Thursday, December 27, 2012

SPAIN

One of the oldest and most historic lighthouses of Spain, this light was built in 1817 by the engineer Pery y Guzmán at the entrance to Malaga's harbor (36°42′50.93″N  4°24′52.47″O). The 37 m (121 ft) round masonry tower rises through the center of a 2-story keeper's house and is known affectionately as La Farola. It was damaged by an earthquake on Christmas Day 1884, and it was relit only in 1917 after a large reformation and refurbishment.  During the Spanish Civil War, on August 28, 1936, La Farola was deactivated by order of the Navy and received an earth-colored paint, with dark and light patches to camouflage. Nevertheless, it was seriously damaged during the war, because of which had to be rebuilt in 1939.

TAIWAN

The Chihou Lighthouse is one of the best known and most visited of all Taiwanese lighthouses and is located on the summit of Chihou Hill, at the north end of Cijin Island in Kaohsiung. The lighthouse was built by English technicians in 1883 during Ching Dynasty, after the port was opened to foreign trading. In 1916, the Japanese made an extensive renovation of the lighthouse as part of the expansion of Kaohsiung port. The lighthouse plays a crucial role in guiding ships since 1918 during night sailing. Chihou was one of the few major Taiwanese lighthouses to escape World War II undamaged. The 15 m (49 ft) octagonal cylindrical brick tower rises from a 1-story brick keeper's house. The light is still active and hosts a museum at the keeper's house.

USA

Pigeon Point Light Station stands on a rocky promontory about 5 miles (8 km) south of Pescadero, California (37°10'54"N 122°23'38''W) and has been guiding ships approaching San Francisco Bay from the south since 1872. Originally called La Punta de La Ballena (Whale Point), this headland was renamed Pigeon Point in memory of the Carrier Pigeon. The clipper ship Carrier Pigeon sailing from Boston to San Francisco and carrying 1,300 tons of cargo, wrecked near this point on June 6, 1853.
The 115 ft (35m) white conical brick tower was equipped with original first order Fresnel lens and first lit on November 15, 1872. In 1926 the lighthouse was provided with electricity. In 1972, the US Coast Guard mounted a 24-inch aerobeacon on the front of the tower and officially retired the Fresnel lens from regular duty. The station was automated in 1974. In 1980, the four light keeper’s houses were leased to American Youth Hostels and serves as a youth hostel for travelers.
The tower has been closed to the public since December 2001. At that time, two large sections of a brick and iron cornice located high atop the tower fell to the ground, prompting the closure of the tower and the area immediately around its base. In November 2011, the first order Fresnel lens was moved from the tower's lantern room to the fog signal building and is on display while the tower is restored. Restoration work began in the fall of 2011.

GERMANY

The Kiel-Holtenau Lighthouse is located at the end of the Thiessenkai, the quay on the north side of the Kiel Canal (Nord-Ostsee-Kanal), the busiest artificial waterway in the world, in Holtenau, about 12 km (7.5 mi) north of Kiel. The 20 m (66 ft) round cylindrical brick tower with lantern and gallery rising from the front of a 2-story brick Imperial-style building was built in 1895. The building includes a memorial hall, the Drei-Kaiser-Gedächtnishalle, in remembrance of Kaisers Wilhelm I, who inaugurated construction of the canal in 1887; Friedrich III, who turned the first shovel of dirt here in 1888, and Wilhelm II, who laid the cornerstone of the lighthouse in 1895. It also houses a registrar's office where weddings are performed.