THE LEAN­ING TOWER OF SHARPS IS­LAND

Soundings - - Dispatches -

Pushed side­ways by an ice floe dur­ing the win­ter of 1977, Sharps Is­land Light­house re­sem­bles the Lean­ing Tower of Pisa. Sit­ting atop what was once a 600-acre is­land, the cast-iron and con­crete light­house lies rust­ing and aban­doned in about 10 to 11 feet of water near the mouth of the Chop­tank River in Ch­e­sa­peake Bay. The ex­ist­ing light­house is not the first to sit here; the orig­i­nal had to be moved be­cause of ero­sion, and the sec­ond was ratch­eted off its foun­da­tion by ice. This caused the en­tire screw­pile light­house to float five miles down the Bay, with its keep­ers still in­side. All “aboard” sur­vived. The light­house is on the Na­tional Reg­is­ter of His­toric Places.

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