Book Signings

We will be discussing and signing copies of our book Long Island Oddities at the following dates and locations:

10/23/13 7PM Carle Place, Barnes and Noble

10/24/13 7PM Bay Shore, Barnes and Noble

10/30/13 7PM Lake Grove, Barnes and Noble

     

Along the coast of Fire Island National Seashore stands a tall monument to shipping days long past. The second Fire Island Lighthouse is still open as a museum. The first one is now a pile of rubble along the boardwalk but both have taken on some haunting legends.

The first lighthouse was built from imported stonework but eventually proved too short to warn ships and it was decided that a new one was in order. At that time the lighthouse keeper was a Mr. Smith who was living there with his family. During the building process, the contractor ran out of stones. He decided to take apart the old lighthouse and use those stones on the new

 
         

construction in order to save on shipping costs and to avoid delays. He managed to convince the Smiths to live in what was basically a wooden shack until construction became complete. Unfortunately exposure to the elements brought illness and one of their young daughters died. Some say you can hear a man moaning. Supposedly he had to wait three days in torment before a doctor came and by then it was too late for his daughter. Others say you can hear footsteps on the lighthouse stairs. Other legends claim one of the lighthouse keepers hung himself in the tower but as of yet we have not found substantial proof.

The lighthouse features in a book on haunted lighthouses though the gift shop says the tale was made up and that there is absolutely nothing paranormal about the lighthouses, old or new. The book, "Ghostly Beacons" by Theresa Schmidt is available at the gift shop. Apparently the ghostly tales have had an effect on the employees though because one woman remembers being scared to climb up into the tower one time when the electricity was out and said that you could hear creepy noises. She admits it could be just the old building settling or wind but till she was uneasy. They also have trouble closing one of the windows in the tower and to date have been unable to fix it. The window just refuses to cooperate.

On the left are some photos of both the older and newer lighthouse. It is definitely scary enough to climb the long and winding spiral staircase where you can see through the stairs just how high you really are. Also if you come and look at the house at night it looks like someone is looking through the second floor window. This has been sighted by a number of people but we believe it to be illusion.

The way the lighthouse is built now, the second story windows are practically in the level with the floor. I suppose they changed the ceiling levels when they renovated but you would literally have to be lying on your stomach to look out of that window.

Is the lighthouse really haunted? We are uncertain. While the employees of the gift shop deny it, they also have a ghost tour held in October and even they get nervous scaling the tower in the dark. If you have a Fire Island Lighthouse encounter, we would like to know.

 
   
Lighthouse during the day        
           
       
Lighthouse at night        
           
     
Ruins of the old lighthouse. The stones were reused and are all around both outside and inside the second lighthouse      
   

 
    The top right window on the image to your left is where some have seen a person looking out. It could be an illusion but it certainly does look odd at times.
           
                 
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