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Musselbed Shoals, RI  Lighthouse destroyed.   

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Musselbed Shoals Lighthouse

1871 – Muscle Bed Beacon, Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island.—The construction of a Light-house on Hog Island Reef has been petitioned for several years, but hitherto Congress has not granted an appropriation therefor. The erection of a portable Light and a Fog-bell on the existing stone tower on the Muscle Bed, one-half mile distant, on the opposite side of the channel, at a cost of $3,000, will, it is believed, obviate the necessity for this light house, which would be a very expensive construction.

1872 – Muscle Bed Beacon, Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island. — In the annual report of last year it is stated as follows:
The construction of a light-house on Hog Island Reef has been petitioned for during several years past, but hitherto Congress has not granted an appropriation therefor. The election of a portable light and a fog-bell on the existing stone-tower on the Muscle Bed, one-half mile distant, on the opposite side of the channel, at a cost of $3,000, will, it is believed, obviate the necessity for this light-house, which would be a very expensive structure.
The steamboat company at Fall River keep a light and fog-signal at Hog Island Reef for their own benefit, and for that of others using the channel to Fall River, and it is deemed proper that the expense for the maintenance of a light and signal at this locality should devolve upon the Light-House Establishment. The recommendation for an appropriation is therefore renewed.

1873 – For placing a light on Muscle-Bed beacon, Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island, March 3, 1873, $3,000.

1873 — Muscle Bed, Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island.—A beacon-light and fog-bell have been erected. The light was exhibited and the fog-bell was ready for operation on the 1st of August, 1873. The illuminating apparatus is dioptric of the fifth order of the system of Fresnel, and shows a fixed red light over an arc of 270°. The focal plane is 31 feet above the sea, and the light can be seen in clear weather at a distance of 10 7/16 nautical miles. The bell is struck by machinery at intervals of 20 seconds.

1875 – Muscle-Bed Shoals, Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island.—This station was seriously damaged by the ice during the past winter, and the rebuilding of the beacon becomes a necessity. The stone pier was moved some four feet by the force of the ice. The light and fog-signal have been continued since the damage, but require frequent adjustment to keep the apparatus in running order. The cost of rebuilding the beacon and protecting its base with rip-rap is $6,000, for which an appropriation is recommended.

1876 – Muscle bed Shoals, Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island.—The following remarks taken from the last annual report are repeated, viz:
This station was seriously damaged by the ice during the past winter, and the rebuilding of the beacon becomes a necessity. The stone pier was moved some four feet by the force of the ice. The light and fog-signal have been continued since the damage, but require frequent adjustment to keep the apparatus in running order. The cost of rebuilding the beacon and protecting its base with riprap is $6,000, for which an appropriation is recommended.

1877 – For rebuilding light-house at Muscle Bed Shoal, March 3, 1877, $6,000.

1877 – Muscle Bed Shoals, Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island.—The pier and superstructure of this station having been seriously injured by ice, an appropriation for rebuilding the station was made by act approved March 3, 1877. Plans have been prepared, and proposals for doing the work have been asked for by advertisement. The present pier will be taken down, enlarged, and rebuilt. The dwelling, fog-signal, &c, will then be replaced upon the new pier.

1878 – Muscle-Bed Shoals, Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island.—Under the appropriation of March, 1877, the stone pier at this station was taken down and a granite pier of greater dimensions erected. The old building from which the light was exhibited and the fog-bell sounded, has been replaced upon the pier.

1879 – Muscle-bed Shoals, Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island.—The frame dwelling which supports the tower and lantern at this station, is in very poor condition, and it may be advantageous to put up a new building during the next fiscal year. This can readily be done with the balance remaining unexpended of the special appropriation for this station.

1880 – Muscle Bed Shoals, Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island.—This station was put in good repair. The tower was painted red.

1889 – Muscle Bed Shoals, Mount Hope Bay, Rhode Island.—Some 163 tons of riprap were placed around the stone pier, and various repairs were made.

1890 – Muscle Bed Shoals, Mount Hope Bay, Rhode Island.—An asphaltic slag roof was laid on the dwelling in place of the worn out shingles.

1894 – Muscle Bed Shoals, on southeast side of the channel, opposite to Bristol Ferry Light, Rhode Island.—The boat landings were cleared of large stone; 112 ½ tons of riprap stone were placed around the pier, and various repairs were made.

1905 – Muscle Bed Shoals, Rhode Island.—Five great stones were removed from the boat landing and replaced on the breakwater. Minor repairs were made.

1913 – William Tengren, keeper, rescued 2 women and 1 man from overturned power boat. Happened on July 20, 1913.

1919 – Otis L. Barstow, keeper, went to assistance of disabled launch Kelley, with 2 men aboard, and towed it to safety.

1924 – Musselbed Shoals Lighthouse was demolished and replaced with a new four-room lighthouse.

1935 – P. J. Brides, keeper of Musselbed Light Station, on April 28, after observing some excitement on the deck of the steamer Plymouth, lowered the station boat and rowed out several hundred yards where he picked up a man who had jumped or fallen overboard; the man was then taken aboard a lifeboat of the Plymouth.

1938 – After being severely damaged by the 1938 Hurricane, Musselbed Shoals Lighthouse was removed in 1939 and replaced by a light on a skeletal tower.

Keepers: Dennis Shea (1873), William Dunnell (1873 – 1875), Thomas Smith (1875 – 1881), Andrew T. Smith (1881 – 1891), James D. Leonard (1891 – 1905), George E. Hansen (1905 – 1906), Lucius E. Chadwick (1906 – 1908), Evard Jansen (1908), John F. Anderson (1908 – 1909), William Tengren (1909 – at least 1915), Otis L. Barstow (at least 1917 – at least 1920), David N. Hanson (at least 1921), Patrick J. Brides (at least 1925 – at least 1935).


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