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The Three Sisters Lighthouses, Eastham

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Lighthouse Landmark
The Three Sisters of Nauset are a trio of historic lighthouses off Cable Road in Eastham, Massachusetts. One of them, The Beacon, remained in service longer than the others.ConstructionThe first set of lighthouses were commissioned by Congress in 1837 and built for $10,000, to provide for a light halfway along the eastern coast of Cape Cod. Because there was one light (the Cape Cod Light) in Truro, and two lights (the Twin Lights) in Chatham, it was decided that there should be three lights to distinguish between the other lights. Built apart in a straight line along the crest of the cliffs, they were brick, tall and wide at the base, and wide at the lantern deck. Each was painted white with black lantern decks, which lent to their looking like three ladies with white dresses and black bonnets – the birth of the name "Three Sisters."Replacement lighthousesBy 1890, however, the three lights were dangerously close to the cliff's edge. Since it was impossible at the time to move the three lights intact, three 22ft wooden lighthouses with otherwise identical markings were built in 1892 to replace the former lights, each built west of their original sites and using the lenses from the originals.The BeaconHowever, erosion continued, and by 1911, with the northernmost light only eight feet from the cliff, it was decided to move the lights back again. At this time only the center light was lit, with a triple flash in homage of her two decommissioned sisters, and became known as The Beacon. In 1918, with both their lanterns removed, the decommissioned north and south lights were purchased and incorporated into a summer cottage along Cable Road. The Beacon, which was now attached to the oil house, was in disrepair, and following its decommission, the northern "Twin Light" of Chatham was moved north to Eastham, to a site near the original lights, becoming the Nauset Light.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
87 reviews
Google
4.5
TripAdvisor
  • The Three Sisters are a decent, but not bad walk, from Nauset Light and the parking lot. It's a nice little stop, but these are just three small lighthouses. The history is interesting but nothing tha...  more »
  • This is a great little adventure on a day when you want to climb a little, get a little history in, and have a family or couples' adventure. There is so much history in The Cape, and we really enjoyed...  more »
  • We made a stop here on our way back from the outer Cape beaches. The walk to the 3 sisters lighthouses was very short (5-10 minutes) with children in tow. The path was paved, and both stroller and whe...  more »
Google
  • Three charming little lighthouses in a very strange place
  • A fun adventure
  • I've never seen a light house without their tops, it's definitely a site to see.
  • Good Fantastic
  • Very nice site to admire the 3 sisters, formerly on Nauset Beach before their replacement by the second lighthouse in Chatham
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