Georgetown Lighthouse, Guyana

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Georgetown Lighthouse
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Georgetown Lighthouse, Guyana
LocationWater Street, Georgetown, Guyana [1]
Coordinates 6°49′25″N58°09′52″W / 6.8236966°N 58.1643569°W / 6.8236966; -58.1643569 Coordinates: 6°49′25″N58°09′52″W / 6.8236966°N 58.1643569°W / 6.8236966; -58.1643569
Year first constructed1817 (first) [1]
Year first lit1830
Automatedclockwork [1]
Foundationforty nine greenheart piles
Constructionstone tower [1]
Tower shapetapered octagonal tower with balcony and lantern [1]
Markings / patternred and white vertical stripes [1]
Tower height30 metres (98 ft)
Focal height31.5 metres (103 ft) [1]
Characteristic Flash every 60s, red or white depending on direction. [1]
Admiralty numberJ6841 [1]
NGA number17292 [1]
ARLHS numberGUY-001 [1]

The Georgetown Lighthouse was first built by the Dutch in 1817 and then rebuilt in 1830 to help guide ships into the Demerara River from the Atlantic Ocean. The 31 m (103 feet) high octagonal structure is a famous Georgetown, Guyana landmark with its distinct vertical red and white stripes. The Lighthouse, located on Water Street, is maintained by the National Trust of Guyana. [2]

The brick structure was commissioned on 1 June 1830, when it replaced a wooden lighthouse that had been built on the same site by the Dutch. British engineers constructed the present lighthouse, reinforcing the building by placing it on a foundation of 49 greenheart piles, making it durable nearly 200 years later.

A floating light was placed at the Demerara bar in March 1838 and a system of signalling to the lighthouse was established. On 27 February 1838 a Committee of Pilotage was formed and entrusted with the signalling. Before establishment of the System of Signalling, a beacon had been erected on the East Coast Demerara and vessels entering had to contribute to the cost of constructing the beacon.

About a half mile east of Fort Groyne there was a block house which was used as a signal station for vessels arriving, and for signalling to Berbice. The coastal signalling was done by semaphore stations.

A steel balcony at the top of the Lighthouse offers a panoramic view of Georgetown and West Coast Demerara.

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  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 Rowlett, Russ (2009-01-12). "Lighthouses of Guyana". The Lighthouse Directory. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
  2. "Historic Kingston". National Trust of Guyana . Retrieved 27 August 2020.