Cape lighthouse topped off
By Ken Warren, 45th Space Wing Public Affairs
/ Published March 09, 2007
CAPE CANAVERAL AiIR FORCE STATION, Fla. -- What went down Jan. 26, 2006 went back up Feb. 28 as workers reattached the lamp room, roof and light to the top of the Cape Canaveral Lighthouse.
"This marks the symbolic end of our lighthouse renovation project," said Robert Elliott, 45th Space Wing project officer. "Significant structural failures were found and fixed. The root issue was old rust in joint connections that had not been repaired in over 100 years."
Fractured portions of the lamp room and lower balcony assembly were re-fabricated. The entire base of the lighthouse was re-painted and cracks were filled with specialized epoxy designed to prevent future "bughole" development.
"Every square inch of the lighthouse's surface area was treated at least eight times," said Mr. Elliott. "This new coating is expected to retard corrosion and last 50 years."
In the small crowd of onlookers watching as the lighthouse was topped off was Jeffrey Honeywell, a descendant of Clinton P. Honeywell, lighthouse keeper from 1904-1930.
"I'm very excited because of my family's connections to this landmark. It's a national treasure," he said. "It's great that the Air Force renovated it. This will allow future generations to see this lighthouse."
The Cape Canaveral Lighthouse was erected at its present location in 1894, but was initially built at another site in 1868, replacing a 60-foot tower built in 1847, according to a history written by Roy D. Honeywell., Because of shore erosion, the new lighthouse was dismantled and moved inland several hundred yards to its current site.
The Cape Canaveral Lighthouse is still used as a navigation aid and is the only operational lighthouse on an Air Force installation. While the Air Force owns the structure, the Coast Guard operates the light, which is expected to be re-lit after renovation work concludes sometime this spring.