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MR-1741 Tillamook Rock Lighthouse

  • Product Description

    Nicknamed "Terrible Tilly" (or Tillie), for its situation in the stormy Pacific Ocean, this decommissioned lighthouse was built in 1881. The structure has attached keeper's quarters and a 62-foot tower that originally housed a first-order Fresnel lens 133 feet above sea level. The light was visible 18 miles out to sea.Lighthouse keepers were hoisted onto it with a derrick and breeches buoy. Storms continually damaged the structure, and once smashed the glass windows in the tower, damaging the lens. The lighthouse was shut down in 1957 and replaced with a whistle buoy, having become the most expensive U.S. lighthouse to operate.The structure was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1981 and is part of the Oregon Islands National Wildlife Refuge.In 1980 the lighthouse was purchased by a group of investors and converted to a private columbarium. Access to the site is severely limited, with a helicopter landing the only way to access the rock, and is off-limits even to the owners during the nesting season. After interring about 30 urns, the license was pulled in 1999 by the Oregon Mortuary and Cemetery Board and was rejected upon reapplication in 2005. The board says the owners have not kept accurate records and, because urns sit on boards and concrete blocks and not in niches, the lighthouse does not even qualify as a columbarium. Ssource:

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