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Florida Lighthouses - Ponce Inlet Lighthouse, Daytona Beach FL

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Ponce De Leon Inlet Light is located on Florida’s Atlantic coast, one mile north and west of the entrance to Ponce De Leon Inlet, six miles south of Daytona Beach, Florida. Originally labeled as the Mosquito Inlet Lighthouse, the kerosene lamp in the first-order fixed Fresnel lens made by Barbier & Fenestre of Paris was first lit on November 1, 1887. The new light could be seen up to 20 miles. Later, he name of the lighthouse was changed from "Mosquito Inlet" to Ponce De Leon Inlet to boost local land sales (about 1920).

Designed by Francis Hopkinson Smith, a noted writer and engineer, it helps mark the long section of coastline from the shoals off Cape Canaveral north to St. Augustine.

Before a light was established, many ships were lost in this vicinity, creating a mariner’s graveyard. During the early 1800’s, attempts to construct a lighthouse in the area met with little success. In 1835 a tower was completed, but a strong gale the same year washed the sand away from around the foundation and seriously endangered the structure. Trouble with the Seminole Indians kept repairs from being made, and shortly afterwards the tower collapsed. Finally, with the purchase of ten acres of land on March 21, 1883, construction began. Before construction was completed in 1887, Chief Engineer Orville E. Babcock drowned in the inlet and the infant tower was rocked by the great Charleston Earthquake in 1886.

The red brick conical tower is 168 feet in height, with the keepers quarters a short distance from its base. The light in the tower is electric, and rated at 200,000 candlepower.

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