Oct 18

Guide to Haunted Lighthouses – New York

Fire Island Lighthouse

Fire Island Lighthouse

Long Island Sound is historically a summer playground. Its history also includes several haunted lighthouses whose atmosphere speaks of murder, revenge, insanity and heartbreak.

Skull Bound Ghosts
Execution Rocks – New York

Execution Rocks remains one of the most grisly in haunted lighthouse history. According to legend, when America was a British colony with a growing revolutionary spirit, the occupying British force, trying to avoid further inflaming the rebels, took condemned prisoners to Execution Rocks. The soldiers chained the prisoners to the rocks at low tide, and then watched as the tide rose to carry out the death penalty. While awaiting their fate, the terrified prisoners were forced to look at the skulls of those who went before them. The executed prisoners exacted their revenge when British soldiers, pursuing George Washington hit a reef and perished.

The legend of Execution Rocks was so horrifying that keepers assigned to this post did not have to sign a contract, and could request and receive an immediate transfer whenever they felt overwhelmed.

There were many whispered stories of ghostly specters, yet the last keeper denied seeing anything, although fire struck the engine room twice on his watch. The first time, when the fog signal slowed, the keeper met with a wall of flames while going to investigate. The second time the roof caught fire ostensibly from an overhead pipe.

Some believe the ghosts of the condemned prisoners continue taking their revenge.

The Long Wait
Fire Island – New York

There are two stories surrounding this light. The first tells of one keeper forcing his wife and child to haul him up to the tower from outside. The keeper refused to climb the tower to check on the light where a predecessor reportedly hung himself. Some say they can hear footsteps and music in the rooms.

The second involves Keeper Smith and his family who lived in a snug, comfortable stone house while the new light was being built. When the project supervisor ran out of rocks, he ordered the keeper to move into a cold drafty wood frame house, so he could transfer the rocks from the stone house to the lighthouse.

The keeper had a child with serious breathing problems, and fearing the dampness of the wood frame house would further damage his child’s lungs, begged the project supervisor to allow them to continue living in the warm stone house. The supervisor refused, and when December’s cold and ferocious winds attacked the island, the child became gravely ill. Keeper Smith frantically summoned a doctor from the mainland, climbing the tower stairs every hour to free the light from the snow and wait for the doctor who never came.

Many people reported hearing footsteps and moaning, and seeing falling plaster. They believe Keeper Smith still climbs the stairs and waits for the doctor.

Suicidal Assistant
Stratford Shoals Lighthouse – New York

Stratford Shoals light is nothing more than a 60-foot granite structure perched above an ocean reef, just off Long Island.

The head keeper left first assistant Morrell Hulse, and second assistant Julius Koster in charge of tending the light while he went ashore. Sometime later, newspapers reported that Julius, in a fit of rage attacked Morrell with a razor. Morrell, forced to defend himself finally calmed a very disturbed Julius.

Soon after the incident, Julius took an ax, locked himself in the lantern room where he stopped the rotating light, making it impossible to warn mariners of impending danger. Morrell’s calm head prevailed and after several hours, he convinced Julius to leave the lantern room. Julius, still in a disturbed frame of mind, jumped into the ocean, and again Morrell bravely saved him. This time, Morrell bound Julius in ropes and held him captive until help arrived two days later. Julius was taken to New York where he finally succeeded in killing himself.

Some believe that his spirit returned to Stratford Shoals light, and doors can be heard slamming, chairs crashing against walls, and pans of hot water reportedly thrown from the stove.

The Coast Guard automated Stratford Shoals in 1969, yet sailors passing by reported hearing eerily loud noises.


Marianne L. Kelly, a former chef is a professional journalist, editor, web content writer, and lighthouse enthusiast. Marianne has written three themed cookbooks, including one featuring America;s most haunted lighthouses. She is currently working on a third that follows each season with stories, poems, thoughts and sayings along with healthy recipes from the bounty of each season. Marianne also works with a web designer writing original content and re-writes, and is available for hire. For more information visit http://www.safeharbourpress.com or http://www.strawintogold.weebly.com.

Article Source: EzineArticles.com

Related Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.