Block Island South East Light by National Register on Flickr.

Block Island South East Lighthouse has been a major aid to navigation since it as first lit in 1874. High atop Mohegan Bluff and visible for miles along a busy sea lane, the tower and attached keeper’s house were planned as showpieces for the U.S. Lighthouse Bureau. The dramatic setting and picturesque keeper’s house combine to provide a powerful expression of the romanticism so often associated with lighthouses. As it turned out, the original setting was all too dramatic. The structures became threatened with collapse by continuous erosion of the bluff and had to be moved some 360 feet in August 1993. A museum is now maintained at the station, but the primary function is – as always – to help steer navigators safely around Block Island’s southeastern shore.

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