March 17, 1813 A newly completed lighthouse on Inishtrahull Island, which is about five nautical miles (t0 kilometers) off the coast of County Donegal in Ireland, first went into service. Inishtrahull Lighthouse was designed by renowned civil engineer George Halpini Sr., who had been appointed inspector of lighthouse for the Dublin Ballast Board in 1810.... Continue Reading →

February 21, 1900 A newly constructed lighthouse began operations on Somes Island (now officially known as Matiu/Somes Island) in the northern half of Wellington Harbour on the southern tip of New Zealand’s North Island. At the time of this lighthouse’s debut, New Zealand was a British colony; it gained semi-independent status as a dominion of... Continue Reading →

January 11, 1815 David Stevenson, who would achieve widespread renown as a civil engineer and lighthouse designer, was born in Scotland’s capital city of Edinburgh. By the time of his birth, his father Robert Stevenson (1772-1850) had begun to establish himself as a notable designer of lighthouses within Scotland. (This country officially became part of... Continue Reading →

June 8, 1724 Engineer and physicist John Smeaton, who is widely regarded as the “Father of Civil Engineering,” was born in the English civil parish of Austhorpe. During his prolific career, Smeaton designed numerous lighthouses, bridges, canals, and harbors.  One of Smeaton’s more notable achievements was a lighthouse that became known as Smeaton’s Tower. This 72-foot... Continue Reading →

January 6, 1886 Russell Randolph Waesche, whose influential tenure as commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) included his strong advocacy of maritime safety, was born in Thurmont, Maryland. Waesche graduated from the U.S. Revenue Cutter School of Instruction in 1906, and was commissioned a Third Lieutenant (Ensign). He subsequently served on cutters in the North... Continue Reading →

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