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Port Adelaide Light (South Neptune Island Light)
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Date Established: 1869
Height of Tower: 69 ft.
Distance from You:
Open to Public?: Yes, as part of the South Australia Maritime Museum
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DescriptionThe original lighthouse for Adelaide, Australia was built in 1869 at the mouth of the Port River. In 1901, the lighthouse was disassembled, moved to South Neptune Island (coordinates: lat -35.2324; long 136.063), and reassembled where it served until 1985. A new light was built at Wonga Shoal on the opposite side of the river to replace the Port Adelaide light. The Wonga Shoal light is still there. The Port Adelaide lighthouse was then disassembled again, ultimately to be moved back to Adelaide where it is now part of the South Australia Maritime Museum.
The Port Adelaide light still has it's Fresnel lens which has three bullseye flash panels and it's original clockwork mechanism. I had the rare treat of getting to wind the weights one Saturday night to set the lens in motion while I was in Adelaide several years ago. It takes some effort! The lens had a characteristic of 3 flashes in 20 sec when it was originally in operation. Now the lens is only lighted occasionally for ceremonially and then only with a 1000 watt bulb. The photo of the lighted lens shows the three bullseye flash panels if you look carefully.