ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. – The nonprofit St. Augustine Lighthouse & Maritime Museum is offering a handcrafted wooden kayak to the community through a silent auction. Created by volunteers in Heritage Boatworks, the kayak is made from strips of red cedar, mahogany and cypress coated with fiberglass.
unique design features the St. Augustine Lighthouse spelled out in in Morse
code which runs along one side, made from mahogany and cypress. The kayak is on
view in the Visitors Center area of the St. Augustine Lighthouse Gift Shop.
is auctioning this incredible wooden watercraft, along with two handmade and
decorated paddles. Minimum bid starts at $2,000.00 through a sealed bid silent
auction, available at http://www.staugustinelighthouse.org/visit/ and click on the link in the
Heritage Boatworks section.
All sealed bids must be received by designated museum staff by 3 p.m. October 15, 2019.
boatbuilders work in the Museum Heritage Boatworks area from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Tuesday through Thursday. Guests can watch them create wooden craft following
boatbuilding traditions practiced in St. Augustine for more than 400 years.
Boatbuilders work with Museum researchers to ensure authentic builds of
historic, wooden, small craft.
“This boat is a beautifully crafted wooden strip kayak that shows the dedication and skill of our volunteer boat builders,” said Brenda Swann, Interpretative Division Director at the St. Augustine Lighthouse & Maritime Museum.
all our volunteers, they help make the Museum a great asset to the community
and a fun, educational place to visit. The proceeds from the auction will help
support our educational programs such as Heritage Boatworks, and preserve the
rich maritime history of the northeast Florida region for future generations.”
For more details about the St. Augustine Lighthouse & Maritime Museum, visit staugustinelighthouse.org or call 904-829-0745. Stay updated on social media at facebook.com/staugustinelighthouse, Instagram.com/stauglighthouse and twitter.com/firstlighthouse
St. Augustine Amateur Radio Society will be on site with HAM Radios
ST. AUGUSTINE, FL – The St. Augustine Lighthouse & Maritime Museum will join 400+ lighthouses from throughout the world for International Lighthouse and Lightship Weekend (ILLW) from August 17-18, with support from members of the St. Augustine Amateur Radio Society (SAARS) on the grounds of the nonprofit Museum throughout the weekend.
Members of SAARS will operate the HAM radios and communicate with lighthouses all over the globe. The weekend festivities will begin at 4:00 p.m. on Fridayand run continuously until 7:00 p.m. on Sunday. Most members of SAARS will rotate shifts through the entire 48 hours.
always enjoy participating in this worldwide event,” said Executive Director Kathy
A. Fleming. “It brings together so many groups of people who are passionate
about the history and care of our historic lighthouses. We appreciate all the
volunteers from the St. Augustine Amateur Radio Society who help us connect
with the world and share the story of our Lighthouse.”
This annual event began in 1998 as a way for lighthouses, lightships and maritime beacons to connect with each other via amateur radio and advocate for the preservation of these historic structures. Major amateur radio organizations such as the Radio Society of Great Britain, the Amateur Radio League of America and the Wireless Institute of Australia support and promote this event.
tent will be set up in front of the St. Augustine Lighthouse to serve as ILLW
headquarters. During regular visiting hours, from 9:00 AM to 7:00 PM, Museum
guests are welcome to visit the tent to listen and watch as SAARS communicates
with other participants around the globe.
Marking its 22nd
anniversary this year, the event attracts over 500
lighthouse entries located in over 40 countries. Today, it is one of the most
popular international amateur radio events in the world.
Alexander Hamilton was first Supervisor of all U.S.
Long before the days of GPS, lighthouses played an integral role in keeping sailors safe on the water. There was no Siri to tell them where to go, so they simply had to fully rely on their wits … and lighthouses.
On August 7, 1789, the U.S. Congress
recognized the importance of Lighthouses and passed the Act for the
Establishment and Support of Lighthouses, Beacons, Buoys, and Public Piers.
This act officially put lighthouses under federal control, attempting to make
navigation for sailors more efficient and safer.
The act specified that it was “the duty of the Secretary of the Treasury” to oversee that the act’s provisions be carried out. This included maintenance of all lighthouses and aids to navigation, as well as overseeing construction of the mandated lighthouse in the Chesapeake Bay.
Alexander Hamilton became the nation’s first Secretary of the
Treasury on September 11, 1789, a little over a month after the Lighthouse Act
was passed. Thus, Secretary Hamilton oversaw the transition of responsibility
for all existing lighthouses (and other aids to navigation) from the various
states and municipalities to the federal government.
Two hundred years later, The
United States Lighthouse Society petitioned for August 7, 1989, to be deemed
National Lighthouse Day, in honor of the day that Congress signed the Act. This
petition only deemed National Lighthouse Day to be a holiday for that specific
Then, on August 7, 2013, the Senate passed a resolution stating that every August 7th be declared National Lighthouse Day. Although not officially law, the recognition of August 7th as National Lighthouse and Lighthouse Preservation Day continues with the government and its agencies, including the National Park Service, which maintains a number of historic lighthouses across the country.
“Thanks to the Junior Service League
of St. Augustine, the St. Augustine Light Station was saved and a maritime
museum was created,” said Kathy Fleming, Executive Director of the St.
Augustine Lighthouse & Maritime Museum.
“We are nonprofit, mission-centered,
and community connected. Our donors and members continue to help us save
maritime history and keep the light shining.”
The St. Augustine Lighthouse & Maritime Museum will celebrate National Lighthouse Day on August 7. Learn the history of Florida’s first lighthouse in exhibits at the nonprofit Museum and participate in the Nation’s Oldest Port Demos, interactive demonstrations offered daily every 30 minutes from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Museum hours are 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. seven days each week, with hours changing to 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. after Labor Day.
anniversary of the historic St. Augustine Lighthouse will be celebrated on
October 15, 2019. This second tower was built from 1871-1874, and the first
order Fresnel lens was lit on October 15, 1874. Prior to this tower, the
Spanish Watchtower was named Florida’s first lighthouse in 1824 by the U.S.
government. A wooden watchtower was first built at the site in the 1560s,
followed by the Spanish Watchtower, which stood at 70 feet high and was made of
coquina, like the Castillo de San Marcos. That coquina came from the quarry on
THE ST. AUGUSTINE LIGHTHOUSE & MARITIME MUSEUM:
pivotal navigation tool and unique landmark of St. Augustine for over 140
years, the St. Augustine Light Station is host to centuries of history in the
Nation’s Oldest Port®. Through interactive exhibits, guided tours
and maritime research, the 501(c)(3) nonprofit St. Augustine Lighthouse &
Maritime Museum is on a mission to discover, preserve, present and keep alive
the stories of the Nation’s Oldest Port® as symbolized by our
working lighthouse. We are the parent organization to the Lighthouse
Archaeological Maritime Program (LAMP) and an affiliate of the Smithsonian
About the American Alliance of Museums:
The St. Augustine Lighthouse &
Maritime Museum is
accredited by the American Alliance of Museums (AAM), the highest national
recognition afforded the nation’s museums.The
American Alliance of Museums has been bringing museums together since 1906,
helping to develop standards and best practices, gathering and sharing
knowledge, and providing advocacy on issues of concern to the entire museum
community. As the ultimate mark of distinction in the museum field,
accreditation signifies excellence and credibility. Accreditation helps to
ensure the integrity and accessibility of museum collections, and reinforces the education and public
service roles of museums and promote good governance practices and ethical
behavior. Representing more than 35,000 individual museum professionals and
volunteers, institutions, and corporate partners serving the museum field, the
Alliance stands for the broad scope of the museum community. (www.aam-us.org)