The Piney Point Lighthouse Museum is a white two-story structure on the north campus of the park and houses museum exhibits, the Lighthouse Lens Museum Store and offers restrooms and visitor information. Guests are encouraged to begin their visitor experience at the museum where you can sign in, pay admission, and obtain a tour guide who will then provide escort to the Potomac River Maritime Exhibit on the north campus and the lighthouse and keeper's quarters on the south campus. Those who desire to climb to the top of the lighthouse must be accompanied by a staff person or volunteer.
Piney Point Lighthouse:
Built in 1836, the Piney Point Lighthouse and keeper’s quarters are located 14 miles up the Potomac River from the Chesapeake Bay. This beacon stands preserved today as a witness to a bygone era of high society entertaining American Presidents such as James Monroe, Franklin Pierce, Theodore Roosevelt and other notables including American statesman Daniel Webster, American Vice President John C. Calhoun, and later, the inimitable singer Kate Smith.
The lighthouse and keeper’s quarters were built by master lighthouse builder, John Donahoo for the contracted price of $3,888. The circular tower stands 35 feet tall from its base to the coping and the walls are 3 feet 10 inches thick at the base and 2 feet 3 inches at the parapet. This lighthouse was the tenth of the 12 lighthouses built by Donahoo in his lifetime.
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