SAINT MARKS LIGHTHOUSE
End of State Road 59
Apalachee Bay, FL
In 1827, navigators using the Gulf of Mexico near St. Marks, petitioned Congress for a lighthouse at the mouth of the St. Marks River, where it flows into Apalachee bay. In 1829 the structure was completed and in the winter of 1842 it was relocated more inland away from encroaching waters undermining the tower. A small, four-room dwelling was added for the keeper.
After the Civil War the tower and house were rebuilt and finished in 1866. The sturdy tower is 82' high and rests on a 12' deep base made of limestone blocks taken from the ruins of Fort San Marcos de Apalache. The walls are four-foot-thick at the base and taper to 18" at the top.
The light was automated in 1960 and joined the rest of the unmanned beacons that the Coast Guard maintains.
St. Marks Lighthouse is in St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge, established in 1931. It is at the end of the road, seven miles from the visitor's center. The lighthouse is not open to the public, but can be viewed around the base.
LIGHTHOUSE - 82' / OPEN - Yes / MUSEUM - Yes / FEE - Yes