Lighthouses in the state of Maryland as identified by the United States Coast Guard. There are fourteen active lights in the state as well as three automated caissons and eleven skeleton towers replacing previously manned lights.
The first lighthouse in the state was lit in 1822 and the last in 1965 (ignoring automated towers erected later); the oldest surviving structure is the Pooles Island Light and the oldest still active is the Cove Point Light. The tallest extant tower is the Craighill Channel Lower Range Rear Light.
If not otherwise noted, focal height and coordinates are taken from the United States Coast Guard Light List, while location and dates of activation, automation, and deactivation are taken from the United States Coast Guard Historical information site for lighthouses. Locations of demolished lights have been estimated using National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) navigational charts.
Maryland's Lighthouses(Images of America: Maryland)
In Colonial times, as the Chesapeake Bay and larger rivers became vital shipping channels, the need arose to mark Marylandís dangerous shoals and waterways. Lighthouses sprang up throughout the 1800s and early 1900s, including wood-framed cottages placed upon screw pile foundations that stood offshore in the unforgiving waters. Most of these unique structures did not survive, lost tragically to ice that also occasionally claimed the lives of the keepers who faithfully tended them and rescued mariners in trouble. With the advent of electricity and GPS, many beacons succumbed to vandalism and neglect, leaving a fraction remaining.