Oak Orchard Harbor Light
The original Oak Orchard Harbor Light House stood on the west side of the Oak Orchard River, along with the keeper’s house between 1871 and 1916. The keepers house, now a private residence, remains intact on Archbald Road, at Oak Orchard on the Lake.
In 1867 a grant of $87,000.00 was made to the port. Two piers, each approximately, 1,000 feet in length, the lighthouse, the keeper’s house, and an elevated walk over one of the piers to the lighthouse were constructed by 1871. Once completed, this structure was recorded as U.S. Light List Number 2365, and the fixed white light was visible for nine miles.
The square pyramidal lighthouse rested on the north end of the west pier, stood over 32 feet tall, was constructed of wood, and the lantern of iron. Wooden ship ladder steps led to a landing, which housed the light. The first floor of the lighthouse was fitted with a locker, a closet with hooks and shelves, and a work table. The second floor housed the lantern, two lockers, and a bunk.
The piers were maintained until 1905 when they were abandoned by the US Government. During a storm in 1914, a large hole was washed through the west pier. Another storm On December 23, 1916 swept away the lighthouse and what remained of the piers.
The Oak Orchard Lighthouse is now a destination on the Great Lakes Seaway Trail. After 8 years of fund-raising and promotion, the full scale historic replica of the lighthouse that once graced the mouth of the Oak Orchard Harbor at Point Breeze in Orleans County has been completed. Since the June 2010 completion date, over 800 persons from around the world have signed the Visitor Book.
The light, under operation from April 1 to November 1, is recognized as a Private Aid to Navigation, or “PATN” and operates under regulation of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Department of the Coast Guard with a 2 nautical mile range limit. While the regulated light is darkened until April 1st, members of the museum committee have decorated the exterior structure for the holidays, complete with a holiday tree in the gallery. Holiday lighting will continue until mid-January.
From the Oak Orchard Museum, Point Breeze, NY.
Oak Orchard Lighthouse • 14357 Ontario St. • Kent (Point Breeze), NY 14477
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