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Lighthouses are being given away free along the East Coast

Lighthouses in Maine, Massachusetts, Connecticut and other states along the eastern coastline are being given away by the General Services Administration (GSA), which no longer finds them useful, due in part to the widespread availability of GPS technology.

The towering beacons will cost nothing to entities willing to maintain and preserve them, as well as making them publicly accessible for educational, cultural or recreational purposes. Local government agencies, nonprofits and educational organizations are encouraged to inquire.

If the federal government gets no offers, the six lighthouses being given away can go to public auction. Highlights include the 51-foot tall Warwick Neck Light in Warwick, R.I., and the 34-foot tall Gurnet Light in Plymouth, Mass.

Also available is the Lynde Point Lighthouse in Old Saybrook, Conn.; the Nobska Lighthouse in Falmouth, Mass.; the Little Mark Island and Monument in Harpswell, Maine; and the Erie Harbor North Pier Lighthouse on Presque Isle, Pa.

GSA real property disposition director John Kelly told the Associated Press that lighthouses have a special place in the nation’s history.

“They were really the instruments to provide safe passage into some of these perilous harbors which afforded communities great opportunities for commerce, and they’re often located in prominent locations that offer breathtaking views,” he said.

Kelly says he’s personally a fan of the one being given away in Warwick, R.I. that dates back to 1827 and overlooks Narragansett Bay.

Four other lighthouses are already set to be sold at auction starting June 2023, including the Stratford Shoal Lighthouse in the middle of Long Island Sound, halfway between New York and Connecticut. Those properties are offered for private use.

The New York Times reported in 2017 that six lighthouses sold by the GSA went for between $10,000 and $27,000, but warned that maintenance on the structures can be very expensive.

The GSA has either given away or sold more than 150 lighthouses since introducing the National Historic Lighthouse Preservation Act in 2000, which has raised $10 million to aid the Unites States Coast Guard.

With News Wire Services

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