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Saybrook Breakwater Lighthouse

saybrook breakwater lighthouse

Old Saybrook, Connecticut
Built in 1886


West side of the mouth of the Connecticut River. You can view the lighthouse from Route 154 Maine St off Route 95 near Old Saybrook center.

Latitude: 41° 15' 48" N
Longitude: 72° 20' 34" W


Historic Stories:

Saybrook Breakwater lighthouse was built in 1886 as part of a channel system that was dug to guide ships into the shallow harbor. Even though its location was close to shore, keepers would only stay there on average only a couple of years due to its constant dampness, and it was difficult with the strong currents and constant winds to row ashore for supplies. There were also no assistant keepers assigned to help the keepers until 1917.

During the hurricane of 1938, New England’s worst hurricane, most everything including a 1,500-gallon tank of kerosene was swept away except for the tower, which actually withstood the force. early saybrook light
Early Saybrook Breakwater Light
Courtesy US Coast Guard

Keeper Gross and Assistant Keeper Bennett were able to survive in the tower and kept the light burning.

Actress Katharine Hepburn lived for many years near Lynde Point Lighthouse and Saybrook Breakwater Light.



Places to Visit Nearby:

Old Saybrook is one Connecticut’s more picturesque coastal towns with plenty of community events and historical New England 18th and 19th century architecture. It is one of the yachting capitals of the Connecticut shoreline, and boasts as being one of Connecticut’s earliest settlements. There are more 18th century Colonial and 19th century Federal buildings than you will find in most New England towns. Fort Saybrook Monument Park houses Fort Saybrook, the first military fortification in the state.

To learn about art in American Impressionism, visit the Florence Griswold Museum of this talented artist and many others.

Take a nice shoreline drive to enjoy the views, or walk to Saybrook Point and go fishing off the pier, get a distant view of the lighthouse, or, play miniature golf with a view of the shoreline. Saybrook light guides fishing boat

It is also one of the yachting capitals of the Connecticut shoreline.

Rocky Neck State Park, in nearby Niantic, has 710 acres that include a beach, trail systems, and a large stone pavilion with many geological features to explore.


Directions for a Distant View:

sun setting by Saybrook Breakwater light The lighthouse can be seen from a distance from the dock at Saybrook Point. Boat tours will give you much closer views.


Contact Info:

Old Saybrook Historical Society
350 Main St
PO Box 4
Old Saybrook, CT  06475

sailboat passes Saybrook Breakwater light


Local Boat Tours

Connecticut River Museum
In addition to exploring the museum, they provide lots of wildlife and eco tours on the RiverQuest, a 64-foot eco-tour boat. There are unique public day sails on a special recreation of an Adriaen block vessel of 1614, the Onrust. They also offer a peaceful lighthouse cruise out of the mouth of the Connecticut River

67 Main Street, Essex, CT 06426
Phone: (860) 767-8269 


Books to Explore

book of the rise and demise of the largest sailing ships

Available in paperback, hard cover, and as an eBook for all devices.

my ebook on apple books

The Rise and Demise of the Largest Sailing Ships:
Stories of the Six and Seven-Masted Coal Schooners of New England

In the early 1900s, New England shipbuilders constructed the world’s largest sailing ships amid social and political reforms. These giants of sail were the ten original six-masted coal schooners and one colossal seven-masted vessel, built to carry massive quantities of coal and building supplies, and measured longer than a football field!

This book, balanced with plenty of color and vintage images, showcases the historical accounts that followed these mighty ships.



My 300-page book, Lighthouses and Coastal Attractions of Southern New England: Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts, provides special human interest stories from each of the 92 lighthouses, along with plenty of indoor and outdoor coastal attractions and tours for you to explore.

Take a look!

book about lighthouses and local coastal atttractions in southern New England




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