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The cover shot for my calendar Tasmanian Treasures

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A signal station was set up at Low Head in 1805. It is Australia’s oldest continuously used pilot station.

The lightstation, established in 1833, was Australia’s third and Tasmania’s second.

314 views at 16th March 2012.

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History

In 1808, the Hebe was wrecked on the rocks at the mouth to the Tamar, thence giving them its name. Altogether, a dozen ships were wrecked in the Tamar over the next 100 years.

A pilots and a signal station was established at Low Head (Georgetown) in 1805 and is Australia’s oldest continuously used pilot station. Current buildings date from 1838.

When a sail was sighted at dusk, a fire was lit and kept burning all night to keep the vessel in touch with the port.

After a review of pilotage in 1827 it was resolved to build a lighthouse at Low Head.

The tower was built in 1833. It was constructed of local rubble with a coat of stucco to make the structure durable and to provide a worthwhile landmark. The crown was built of freestone from Launceston.

The keepers’ quarters consisted of four rooms attached to the base of the tower. The only case of the quarters being attached in any Tasmanian lighthouse.

The tower was 15.25 metres from top to bottom. The lantern room was built of timber in Launceston.

It had been designed by the then Colonial Architect John Lee Archer who was responsible for the design of many other Tasmanian lights.

The original apparatus was provided by a Mr. W Hart of Launceston. He supplied “six dozen lamps, including reflectors, at three shillings and sixpence each”.

This first light was known as the ‘Georgetown Station’.

It is Australia’s third and Tasmania’s second lighthouse built.

Conditions were poor on the early Tasmanian lightstations. Low head was no exception, being manned by a superintendent (headkeeper) and two convict assistants who were locked in their quarters overnight.

In 1835, the light was upgraded by installation of a revolving shutter which was rotated by a weight-driven clockwork mechanism.

In April 1838, the original tin reflectors and Argand lamps were replaced by a new revolving lens array from Wilkins and Co of London, UK. In 1851, the candelas were increased, but no figures are quoted.

Listed as a historic site in the Register of the National Estate on 21 October 1980 ID 12605

Taken with Panasonic Lumix DMC-FH1 point & shoot.

Currently working with independent schools in Tasmania

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Comments

  • gail woodbury
    gail woodburyover 3 years ago

    This is a beautiful capture Tony .. Love it !! – (got to love a lighthouse!! )

  • Thank you Gail for the fave and comment. It was such a lovely morning, the blue sky and green grass gave it a nice contrasting background. Tony:)

    – TonyCrehan

  • maggie326
    maggie326over 3 years ago

    Great capture Tony love lighthouses

  • Me too Maggie and I could not resist this one. Thanks for your fave and comment. Tony:)

    – TonyCrehan

  • hastypudding
    hastypuddingover 3 years ago

  • Thank you HP.

    – TonyCrehan

  • Indrani Ghose
    Indrani Ghoseover 3 years ago

    Fantastic shot.

  • Thanks for your fave and comment Indrani. I had half an hour to spare before my 9:00am appointment at a George Town School so I drove out to Low Head to see the lighthouse. Tony:)

    – TonyCrehan

  • Nancy Richard
    Nancy Richardover 3 years ago

    Fine example of a “peppermint” lighthouse. Good shot, Tony!

  • Thanks Nancy. Is that what the white ones are called? Tony:)

    – TonyCrehan

  • LucyAbrao
    LucyAbraoover 3 years ago

    Very nice, Tony.

  • Thank you for looking and for your comment Lucy. I see you like lighthouses too. Tony:)

    – TonyCrehan

  • Audrey Clarke
    Audrey Clarkeover 3 years ago

  • Thanks Audrey

    – TonyCrehan

  • Linda  Makiej
    Linda Makiejover 3 years ago

    Beautiful work!!

  • Thank you Linda. Right place at the right time luckily. Tony:)

    – TonyCrehan

  • Odille Esmonde-Morgan
    Odille Esmonde...over 3 years ago

    Very nice image and interesting history, thanks for sharing

  • Thank you for your comment Odille. As I was in George town to work for the day, I did not really have time to explore all the great history of the old port and pilot station so I must get back there one day. Tony:)

    – TonyCrehan

  • Nancy Richard
    Nancy Richardover 3 years ago

    I don’t think that peppermint lighthouses are a legitimate term, but that’s what I call them because of the white with red stripes. (I thought I may have seen that somewhere, too.)

  • Good name anyway.

    – TonyCrehan

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