Stratford Shoal Lighthouse (1877)

June 29th, 2009 Posted in Bridgeport, Gothic, Lighthouses


Stratford Shoal Light marks a dangerous reef located in the middle of Long Island Sound. It was first marked for navigation by a pair of spar buoys in 1820. A lightship was placed there in 1838, but it frequently drifted off its station. Stratford Shoal Lighthouse, constructed on a small, unincorporated, man-made island, was completed in 1877 to replace the lightship. Automated in 1970, it is still an active aid to navigation. Also known as Middle Light, the lighthouse is halfway between Port Jefferson, New York and Bridgeport, Connecticut. Although the State of New York ceded the territory on which the lighthouse was built, it is classified as a Connecticut lighthouse on official maps. The lighthouse can be seen distantly from the Bridgeport-Port Jefferson Ferry. There are some videos of the lighthouse on YouTube:

  1. 9 Responses to “Stratford Shoal Lighthouse (1877)”

  2. By Alan Grefig on Sep 16, 2009

    I was fishing off the lighthouse last night 8-9 PM 8/15/09, water was near dead calm. Color of the sky and the water blended together so well it was hard to see the horizon, a dark slate grey. The background light from the CT coast framed the lighthouse in an eery light and birds were perched on the hand rail of the ramp just staring at us neither moving or making a sound, all back-lit from the coast. Talk about a surreal situation I was almost expecting Dracula to emerge from the house. Seriously, I keep a level head in strange situations but last night was one of the most unique and profound experiences I’ve ever had in my life. If there is anyway to spend some time out there I’m your man. You could do a movie at this location. Great piece of American architecture. Fishing was top notch also, Porgies galore.

  3. By Don Wankel on Dec 8, 2010

    I was stationed on Stratford Shoal for 18 months. It was a 3 man Light with 2 men on board at all times. I agree with Alan it would be a great site for a movie. At times it could feel spooky when the fog was thick and the Fog Horn was sounding. It was a Great time in my life living on a real piece of History. I was there Jan 68 to Aug 69.

  4. By Capt. Russ Camacho on Mar 10, 2013

    When I was a kid sailing Long Island Sound in my Dad’s lobester boat, I recall Middleground Light being a Sector Light.
    All these years later, sailing past it in my trawler, the chart shows this no longer to be the case.
    Do I recall correctly? In the 60’s was this a sector light? And if so, when was it changed?
    Thanks and Regards,
    Capt. Camacho

  5. By Don Wankel on Apr 7, 2013

    Russ Jan 68 to Aug 69 It was a rotating Beacon. I don’t recall the candle power of the Light but I think you could see it 8 to 10 miles away. We had a Lobster man who fished around the Light and would give us a couple every now and than. That was a great treat.

  6. By Capt. Russ Camacho on May 10, 2013

    Thanks, Don!

  7. By craig morrison on May 18, 2014

    I am seriously considering to adopt this lighthouse, since I’ve restored one already!

  8. By alan grefig on Aug 19, 2014

    I’d be interested in working on the lighthouse. Retirement is around the corner and I live right near the Port Jefferson ferry. The light house is a real beauty from the outside. Every time I’m out there fishing I wonder what the inside must look like. Don and Capt. Russ are you guys interested? We’re going to need a film crew for this.I’m sure there are people on both sides of the Sound with stories to tell about that place.

  9. By Nick Korstad on Nov 10, 2016

    I recently acquired the Stratford Shoal Lighthouse through the National Historic Lighthouse Preservation Act. I’m in the process of securing the bottom lands from the state and hoping to begin the first stages of restoration in 2017. Anyone who has any interior or exterior pics, please feel free reach out.

  10. By Don Wankel on Dec 24, 2016

    Nick Congratulations on getting Stratford Shoals. I know you will enjoy it once you get it back to being livable. If I can help you with any information let me know. I live in NC and Fl so won’t be able to help on your project.

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