Lighthouses of the United States: South and Central Texas

Texas is the second-largest U.S. state (after Alaska), but its long coast on the Gulf of Mexico is relatively featureless and has never required very many lighthouses. This page includes the lights of South Texas and three privately built lighthouses of Central Texas. In South Texas only four historic lighthouses survive and only two are active, Matagorda and Lydia Ann, both under private maintenance. The major ports, at Matagorda Bay, Corpus Christi and Brownsville, do have a large number of modern harbor lights.

There is no state preservation society, but restoration projects have been completed at the Port Isabel and Matagorda Island towers.

Navigational aids in the United States are operated by the U.S. Coast Guard, but ownership (and sometimes operation) of historic lighthouses has been transferred to local authorities and preservation organizations in many cases. Texas lights are the responsibility of the Coast Guard's Eighth District.

ARLHS numbers are from the ARLHS World List of Lights. Admiralty numbers are from volume J of the Admiralty List of Lights & Fog Signals. USCG numbers are from Volume IV of the U.S. Coast Guard Light List.

General Sources
Texas Lighthouses
Fine photos and accounts by Kraig Anderson for eight historic light stations.
Online List of Lights - United States
Photos posted by Alexander Trabas. Many of these photos were taken by Capt. Peter Mosselberger ("Capt. Peter") or Capt. Theo Hinrichs ("Capt. Theo").
The Lighthouse People - Texas
Photos from visits by Bob and Sandra Shanklin.
Texas Lighthouses
Historical information posted by amateur radio operator W5AZN.
Lighthouses in Texas
Photos by various photographers available from Wikimedia.
Leuchttürme auf der USA auf historischen Postkarten
Historic postcard views posted by Klaus Huelse.
NOAA Nautical Chart On-Line Viewer: Gulf Coast
Nautical charts for the coast can be viewed online.
U.S. Coast Guard Navigation Center: Light Lists
The USCG Light List can be downloaded in pdf format.

Port Isabel Light
Port Isabel Light, Port Isabel, March 2008
Flickr Creative Commons photo by SpartanGirl1998

South Texas Lighthouses

Calhoun County (Matagorda Bay Area) Lighthouses
Matagorda Ship Channel Entrance
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 64 ft (19.5 m); white flash every 10 s. This tower also carries the rear light of the outbound exit range (Range B) (white light occulting once every 4 s, at focal plane 62 ft (19 m)) and also a passing light (red flash every 4 s at focal plane 23 ft (7 m)). 64 ft (19.5 m) square skeletal tower with gallery. The tower carries a rectangular daymark colored red with a white vertical stripe. Trabas has Capt. Peter's photo, and Google has a satellite view. Located on the north jetty at the entrance to the Matagorda Ship Channel, a cut made through the barrier about 3 miles (5 km) east of Port O'Connor and a similar distance northeast of the natural Matagorda Inlet. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty J4193.1; USCG 4-1385 (entrance light) and 27180 (range light).
Matagorda Ship Channel Entrance Range (Range A) Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 78 ft (24 m); white light, 3 s on, 3 s off; there's also a passing light showing a white flash every 4 s at focal plane 21 ft (6.5 m). 78 ft (24 m) square skeletal tower with gallery, mounted on a rectangular (double square) platform supported by piles. Trabas has Capt. Peter's photo, and Google has a satellite view. Located in Matagorda Bay, east of the ship channel and about 2.5 miles (4 km) northwest of the entrance. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty J4192.1; USCG 4-27125.
Point Comfort Channel Range E Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 66 ft (20 m); red light occulting once every 4 s, visible only on the range line; there's also a passing light showing a white flash every 4 s at focal plane 17 ft (5 m). 60 ft (18 m) square skeletal tower with gallery, mounted on a square platform supported by piles. Trabas has Capt. Peter's very distant view, and Google has a satellite view. This is the inbound range for ships arriving at Point Comfort, on the north shore of Matagorda Bay. Located near the waterfront in an indistrial area of Point Comfort. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty J4195.59; USCG 4-27490.
Matagorda Ship Channel Range C Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 60 ft (18 m); white light occulting once every 4 s, visible only on the range line; there's also a passing light showing a white flash every 4 s at focal plane 15 ft (4.5 m). 60 ft (18 m) square skeletal tower with gallery, mounted on a square platform supported by piles. Trabas has Capt. Peter's distant view, and Google has a satellite view. Located in the northwestern corner of Matagorda Bay about 2 miles (3 km) east of the Port Lavaca waterfront. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty J4195.03; USCG 4-27345.
Point Comfort Channel Range D Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 47 ft (14.5 m); green light occulting once every 4 s, visible only on the range line; there's also a passing light showing a white flash every 4 s at focal plane 18 ft (5.5 m). 47 ft (14.5 m) square skeletal tower with gallery, mounted on a square platform supported by piles. Trabas has Capt. Peter's distant view, and Google has a satellite view. This is the outbound range for ships leaving Point Comfort, on the north shore of Matagorda Bay. Located off Gallinipper Point in the northwestern corner of Matagorda Bay about 2 miles (3 km) east of the Port Lavaca waterfront. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty J4195.63; USCG 4-27520.
*** Halfmoon Reef
1858 (Walter H. Stevens). Inactive since 1942 (a decorative flashing light is displayed). 6 m (20 ft) hexagonal wood keeper's house surmounted by a hexagonal cylindrical tower with lantern and gallery. Lighthouse painted white with green trim. Jimmy Emerson's photo is at right, a 2008 photo is available, and Google has a street view and a satellite view. This lighthouse was originally located on a screwpile platform off Palacios Point in the central part of Matagorda Bay; the Coast Guard has a historic photo. The lighthouse was deactivated, sold, and relocated onshore following a 1942 hurricane. In 1978, it was donated by its owner, Bill Bauer, to the Calhoun County Historical Commission. Bauer also endowed a trust fund for future maintenance. The lighthouse was then relocated a second time to the Port Lavaca Community Park in Port Lavaca, at the west end of the bay, where it is in service as the Port Lavaca Visitors Center. The building was renovated in the spring of 2016, reopening in August. Located at the intersection of TX 35 and TX 238 at the northeastern entrance to Port Lavaca. Site and lighthouse open daily. Owner/site manager: Calhoun County Historical Commission. ARLHS USA-363.

Halfmoon Reef Light, Port Lavaca, July 2015
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Jimmy Emerson
Matagorda
1852 (relocated inland 1873) (Hiram G. Runnels). Reactivated (inactive 1995-1999, now privately maintained); focal plane 90 ft (27.5 m); white flash every 3 s. 79 ft (24 m) tapered cast iron tower, painted black, solar-powered 250 mm lens. The original 3rd order Fresnel lens is on display at the Calhoun County Museum in Port Lavaca. The keeper's house and all other light station buildings have been demolished. Ron Smudy's photo is at right, Anderson has an excellent page for the lighthouse, a 2009 photo is available, the Coast Guard has a historic photo of the light station, and Google has a satellite view. This is the first lighthouse built in Texas. Originally a sibling of Pass a l'Outre Light LA, the tower was raised from 65 ft (20 m) to 79 ft (24 m) when it was relocated, giving it an unusual tapered profile. The Matagorda Island Foundation raised over $1 million as a Millennium project to preserve the lighthouse, and the beacon was relit on New Year's Eve, 1999. After three more years of work, the restored lighthouse was rededicated on 11 June 2004. In later phases of the project, the keeper's house was to be rebuilt and a visitor center built at the state park dock. These improvements have not been made, and in 2014 there were discussions about plans for further restoration. The lighthouse is located in the Matagorda Island Wildlife Management Area. There is no regular ferry service, but boats can be chartered from Port O'Connor. Located near the northeast end of Matagorda Island, opposite Port O'Connor. Site open, tower closed. Owner: Texas Parks and Wildlife (leased to Calhoun County). Site manager: Matagorda Island Foundation. ARLHS USA-482; USCG 4-1395.

Aransas County Lighthouses
*** Texas Maritime Museum (Rockport)
2003. Active (privately maintained); focal plane 43 ft (13 m); quick-flashing white light. 48 ft (14.5 m) square tower with a broad observation gallery, pyramidal roof, and a small lantern at the peak. The tower is painted black with a white trapezoidal daymark on the front face; observation room painted white; roof is red. Catherine Cook has a good 2008 photo, and Google has a street view and a satellite view. An addition to the museum built in 2003, the building houses exhibits related to Texas lighthouses. Located at 1202 Navigation Circle on the waterfront at Rockport, on the west side of Aransas Bay. Site open; museum and tower open daily except Mondays (admission fee). Owner/site manager: Texas Maritime Museum. ARLHS USA-1247; USCG 4-39010.

Matagorda Light, Calhoun County, March 2013
Flickr photo copyright Ron Smudy, courtesy of Fred Lanoue
used by permission
Corpus Christi Cut A Outbound Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 78 ft (24 m); white light, 3 s on, 3 s off, visible only on the range line. Approx. 72 ft (22 m) square skeletal tower mounted on a concrete base. The tower carries a rectangular daymark colored red with a white vertical stripe. Trabas has Capt. Theo's photo, and Google has a satellite view. The Corpus Christi Cut is a dredged channel about 20 miles (32 km) long connecting Corpus Christi Bay to Aransas Pass. Located in dunes about 0.6 mi (1 km) north of the pass. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS USA-1366; Admiralty J4213.26; USCG 4-28310.
 
Lydia Ann Channel (Aransas Pass)
1857 (Walter H. Stevens). Reactivated (inactive 1952-1988; now privately maintained); focal plane 65 ft (20 m); continuous white light. 68 ft (21 m) octagonal red brick tower. Lantern painted white. The original 4th order Fresnel lens is on display at the Port Aransas Museum. The lighthouse is a sibling of the Sabine Pass (Louisiana) Light, but without the buttresses added to that lighthouse. The 1-story frame keeper's quarters (1919) is occupied by resident keepers. Jim Howard's photo is at right, Kimberly Lavoie has a 2016 photo, Trabas has Capt. Theo's photo, and Google has a satellite view. The light station was restored by its former owner Charles Butt, owner of the HEB grocery chain; it remains in private ownership. The keepers light the lens each night. Located adjacent to the Lydia Ann Channel on the north side of Aransas Pass in San Patricio County. Accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed. Owner/site manager: private. ARLHS USA-018; Admiralty J4216.49 (ex-J4212); USCG 4-39720.

Eastern Nueces County (Port Aransas Area) Lighthouses
Harbor Island Range Front
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 67 ft (20 m); green (night) or white (day) light, 1 s on, 1 s off, visible only on the range line. Approx. 62 ft (19 m) square skeletal tower. Trabas has Capt. Theo's photo, and Google has a satellite view. The range guides vessels through the dredged cut that has replaced Aransas Pass for commercial traffic. Located about 1.75 miles (3 km) southwest of the historic lighthouse. Site status unknown. ARLHS USA-1367; Admiralty J4213; USCG 4-28145.
Harbor Island Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 121 ft (37 m); continuous green (night) or white (day) light visible only on the range line. Approx. 115 ft (35 m) triangular skeletal tower. Trabas has Capt. Theo's photo, and Google has a satellite view. Located 0.85 mi (1.37 km) northwest of the front light. Site status unknown. ARLHS USA-1368; Admiralty J4213.1; USCG 4-28150.
Lydia Ann Lighthouse
Lydia Ann Channel Light, Aransas Pass, June 2007
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Jim Howard
Corpus Christi Cut B Outbound Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 128 ft (39 m); white light, 3 s on, 3 s off, visible only on the range line; there's also a quick-flashing yellow passing light at a focal plane of 36 ft (11 m). 128 ft (39 m) square skeletal tower mounted on a square platform supported by piles. Trabas has Capt. Theo's photo, and Google has a satellite view. Located in Corpus Christi Bay off the south side of an island southeast of Ingleside. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS USA-1363; Admiralty J4214.41; USCG 4-28710.
La Quinta Outbound Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 55 ft (17 m); white light, 3 s on, 3 s off, visible only on the range line. 55 ft (17 m) square skeletal tower mounted on a square platform supported by piles. The tower carries a rectangular daymark colored red with a white vertical stripe. Trabas has Capt. Theo's photo, and Google has a satellite view. Located in Corpus Christi Bay off the south side of an island southeast of Ingleside. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS USA-1370; Admiralty J4216.91; USCG 4-28965.
Corpus Christi Cut A Inbound Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 78 ft (24 m); white light, 3 s on, 3 s off, visible only on the range line. Approx. 65 ft (20 m) square skeletal tower mounted on a square platform supported by piles. The tower carries a rectangular daymark colored red with a white vertical stripe. Trabas has Capt. Theo's photo, and Google has a satellite view. Located in Corpus Christi Bay about 3 miles (5 km) southwest of Ingleside. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS USA-1362; Admiralty J4214.31; USCG 4-28625.

San Patricio County Lighthouse
La Quinta Inbound Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 64 ft (19.5 m); green light, 3 s on, 3 s off, visible only on the range line. Approx. 59 ft (18 m) square skeletal tower carryings a rectangular daymark colored red with a white vertical stripe. Trabas has Capt. Peter's distant view, and Google has a satellite view. Located in an industrial area at the northernmost extension of Corpus Christi Bay. Site and tower closed. ARLHS USA-1369; Admiralty J4216.96; USCG 4-28975.

Corpus Christi City Lighthouses
* Corpus Christi Cut B Inbound Range Front
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 55 ft (17 m); green light occulting once every 4 s, visible only on the range line. This light is mounted on the front of the Art Museum of South Texas. Below the light is a rectangular daymark colored red with a white vertical stripe. Capt. Theo's photo showing both range lights is at right, Trabas has Capt. Peter's photo, and Google has a street view and a satellite view. Located on the Corpus Christi waterfront on the south side of the entrance to the inner harbor channel. Site open, tower closed. Owner/site manager: Art Museum of South Texas. ARLHS USA-1364; Admiralty J4215.25; USCG 4-28770.
Corpus Christi Cut B Inbound Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 101 ft (31 m); continuous green light visible only on the range line. 101 ft (31 m) square skeletal high-voltage transmission tower, painted white. The tower carries a rectangular daymark colored red with a white vertical stripe. Capt. Theo's photo showing both range lights is at right, Trabas has Capt. Theo's photo, the light is also seen in the background of the photo at right, and Google has a street view and a satellite view. Located in an industrial area on the south side of the inner harbor channel in Corpus Christi. Site and tower closed. ARLHS USA-1365; Admiralty J4215.26; USCG 4-28775.
Industrial Canal Inbound Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 65 ft (20 m); continuous green light. Approx. 62 ft (19 m) square skeletal tower carrying a rectangular daymark colored red with a white vertical stripe. Trabas has a photo, and Google has an indistinct satellite view. The Corpus Christi Industrial Canal is a channel with several turning basins; about 4 mi (6.4 km) long, it parallels the south shore of Nueces Bay, a northwestern extension of Corpus Christi Bay. Located at the west end of Avery Point Turning Basin on the south side of the Canal. Site and tower closed. Admiralty J4215.51; USCG 4-28830.
Corpus Christi Range Lights
Corpus Christi Cut B Westbound Range Lights, Corpus Christi, 2011
photo copyright Capt. Theo Hinrichs; used by permission
Tule Lake Channel Inbound Range A Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 63 ft (19.5 m); continuous green light. Approx. 59 ft (18 m) square skeletal tower carrying a rectangular daymark colored red with a white vertical stripe. Trabas has a photo, and Google has a satellite view and a distant street view. Located on the north side of the Canal, north of Navigation Boulevard and opposite the Industrial Canal Inbound Range Light. Site status unknown. Admiralty J4215.56; USCG 4-28840.
Tule Lake Channel Directional
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 143 ft (44 m); continuous or flashing light, white, red or green depending on direction. Approx. 138 ft (42 m) triangular skeletal tower. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. The light guides ships through a narrow section of the Canal. This is apparently a new tower, charted but not yet listed by the Admiralty. Located on the south side of the Canal at the start of the Tule Lake section. Site and tower closed.
Tule Lake Channel Outbound Range F Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 80 ft (24.5 m); green light, 3 s on, 3 s off, intensified on the range line. Approx. 75 ft (23 m) square skeletal tower carrying a rectangular daymark colored red with a white vertical stripe. Trabas has a photo, and Google has a street view and a satellite view. Located next to the Interstate Grain Corporation at 5700 Up River Road on the south side of the Canal. Site status unknown. Admiralty J4215.96; USCG 4-28890.
Tule Lake Channel Inbound Range B Front
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 55 ft (17 m); quick-flashing green light, intensified on the range line. 55 ft (17 m) square skeletal tower carrying a rectangular daymark colored red with a white vertical stripe and mounted on a platform supported by piles. Trabas has a photo, and Google has an indistinct satellite view. Located on the south side of the Canal at a Valero Oil tank farm. Site and tower closed. Admiralty J4215.75; USCG 4-28850.
Tule Lake Channel Inbound Range B Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 75 ft (23 m); green light, 3 s on, 3 s off, intensified on the range line. Approx. 72 ft (22 m) square skeletal tower carrying a rectangular daymark colored red with a white vertical stripe. Trabas has a photo, and Google has a satellite view. Located in a Valero Oil tank farm on the south side of the Canal, 651 yd (595 m) west of the front light. Site and tower closed. Admiralty J4215.76; USCG 4-28855.

Willacy County Lighthouse
* Port Mansfield Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 77 m (23.5 m); red light occulting once every 4 s, visible only on the range line. Approx. 72 ft (22 m) square skeletal tower mounted on a square concrete base. The tower carries a rectangular daymark colored red with a white vertical stripe. Google has a street view and a satellite view. Port Mansfield is a fishing port on the west side of Laguna Madre, connected to the Gulf of Mexico by an artificial cut through the South Padre Island barrier beach. Located one block west off Red Fish Bay Road (TX 186) at Beacon Street in Port Mansfield. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS-1401; USCG 4-29420.

Cameron County (Brownsville Area) Lighthouses
**** Port Isabel (Point Isabel)
1853 (John E. Garrey). Reactivated (inactive 1905-2018, now privately maintained and unofficial); focal plane 91 ft (28 m); continuous white light. 57 ft (17 m) brick tower, painted white; lantern and gallery black. A replica of the 1-story frame 1855 keeper's quarters (1995) houses a small museum and the city's visitor center. A photo is at the top of this page, Larry Weiss has a fine photo, Huelse has a historic postcard view, and Google has a street view and a satellite view. The lighthouse reopened in late July 2000 following a major restoration. In 2014 the buildings were repainted and the stairs of the lighthouse repaired. The lighthouse was closed to climbing in October 2016 for restoration and repairs. Various problems caused the planned four-month restoration to extend more than a year, but the work was completed by the end of 2017 and the lighthouse reopened on 2 January 2018. Later in 2018 city officials opposed a proposal to shift control of the lighthouse from the state parks agency to the state historical commission. Located on TX 100 at Tarnava Street in Port Isabel, at the west end of the bridge to Padre Island. Site open, visitor center (free) open daily except Sundays, tower (admission fee) open daily. Owner: Texas Parks and Wildlife (Port Isabel Lighthouse State Historic Site). Site manager: Museums of Port Isabel. ARLHS USA-649.
* Laguna Madre Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 67 ft (20 m); green light, 3 s on, 3 s off, visible only on the range line. 62 ft (19 m) square skeletal tower mounted on a square platform supported by piles. The tower carries a rectangular daymark colored red with a white vertical stripe. Trabas has Capt. Peter's photo, and Google has a satellite view. This light is close to the location of the historic Brazos Santiago Light. The front light is on a shorter skeletal tower just offshore. The range guides outbound vessels toward the Brazos Santiago Pass. Located off Channel View Road near the southern tip of South Padre Island. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS USA-1323; Admiralty J4226.56; USCG 4-29560.
Brazos Santiago Entrance Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 72 ft (22 m); green light, 3 s on, 3 s off, visible only on the range line. 72 ft (22 m) square skeletal tower mounted on a square platform supported by piles. The tower carries a rectangular daymark colored red with a white vertical stripe. Trabas has Capt. Peter's photo, and Google has a satellite view. The front light is on a shorter skeletal tower. Located in the sound about 1.75 mi (3 km) east southeast of Port Isabel. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS-1405; Admiralty J4226.51; USCG 4-29470.
Brownsville Channel Outbound Range C Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 65 ft (20 m); green light, 3 s on, 3 s off, visible only on the range line. 62 ft (19 m) square skeletal tower. The tower carries a rectangular daymark colored red with a white vertical stripe. Trabas has Capt. Peter's photo, and Google has a satellite view. The Brownsville Channel is a canal 17 mi (27 km) long linking the city of Brownsville to Brazos Santiago Pass. The canal serves ocean-going ships, and it is also the southernmost channel of the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway. The range guides vessels leaving Brownsville. Located on the south side of the channel near the east end. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS USA-1376; Admiralty J4226.91; USCG 4-29865.
Brownsville Channel Outbound Range E Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 63 ft (19.5 m); green light, 3 s on, 3 s off, visible only on the range line. 60 ft (18 m) square skeletal tower mounted on a square platform supported by piles. The tower carries a rectangular daymark colored red with a white vertical stripe. Trabas has Capt. Peter's photo (also seen at right), and Google has a satellite view. This range also guides vessels leaving Brownsville. Located on the north side of the channel opposite the Range A Rear Light (next entry). Site open, tower closed. ARLHS USA-1378; Admiralty J4227.11; USCG 4-29905.
Brownsville Channel Inbound Range A Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 60 ft (18 m); green light, 3 s on, 3 s off, visible only on the range line. 57 ft (17.5 m) square skeletal tower. The tower carries a rectangular daymark colored red with a white vertical stripe. Trabas has Capt. Peter's photo, and Google has a satellite view. This is the entrance range for vessels approaching Brownsville. Located on the south side of the channel about 1/4 the way down. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS USA-1374; Admiralty J4226.96; USCG 4-29875.
Brownsville Channel Inbound Range B Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 75 ft (23 m); green light, 3 s on, 3 s off, visible only on the range line. 72 ft (22 m) square skeletal tower. The tower carries a rectangular daymark colored red with a white vertical stripe. Trabas has Capt. Peter's photo, and Google has a satellite view and a very distant street view. This range guides vessels approaching Brownsville. Located on the north side of the channel near the middle. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS USA-1375; Admiralty J4227.21; USCG 4-29930.
Brownsville Channel Outbound Range G Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 58 ft (17.5 m); green light, 3 s on, 3 s off, visible only on the range line. 55 ft (16.5 m) (?) square skeletal tower. The tower carries a rectangular daymark colored red with a white vertical stripe. Trabas has Capt. Peter's photo, and Google has a satellite view and a very distant street view. This range guides vessels leaving Brownsville. The tower appears taller than its listed height in the photo. Located beside a service road on the south side of the channel about 2/3 of the way from the entrance. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS USA-1381; Admiralty J4227.41; USCG 4-29970.
Brownsville Channel Range E Rear Light
Brownsville Channel Range E Rear Light, April 2012
photo copyright Capt. Peter Mosselberger; used by permission
Brownsville Channel Inbound Range D Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 67 ft (20 m); white light, 3 s on, 3 s off. 64 ft (19.5 m) (?) square skeletal tower. The tower carries a rectangular daymark colored red with a white vertical stripe. Trabas has Capt. Peter's photo, and Google has a satellite view. Located on the south side of the channel a short distance west of the fishing harbor. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS USA-1377; Admiralty J4227.51; USCG 4-29955.
Brownsville Channel Inbound Range F Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 98 ft (30 m); green light during the night and white light during the day, occulting once every 4 s, visible only on the range line. 64 ft (19.5 m) (?) square skeletal tower. The tower carries a rectangular daymark colored red with a white vertical stripe. Trabas has a very distant view by Capt. Peter, and Google has a street view and a satellite view. This is the terminal range for vessels arriving in Brownsville. Located beside the South Padre Island Highway (TX 48) at Coffee Port Road on the east side of Brownsville. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS USA-1380; Admiralty J4228.06; USCG 4-29995.

Central Texas Lighthouses

Comal County Lighthouse
* Lake Canyon Yacht Club
1985. Active; white light, characteristics unknown. Approx. 25 ft (7.5 m) octagonal wooden tower with lantern, painted white; lantern is turquoise. The club has a small photo, and Google has a satellite view. This was originally a faux lighthouse built as part of the Boston Sea Party restaurant in San Antonio. When the restaurant was demolished in 1985 the lighthouse was donated to the club and relocated. The base of the tower includes a room used for hearing race protests. Located on a bluff above the docks of the yacht club, off Mt. Lookout Drive on the north shore of Canyon Lake in Comal County, about 45 mi (72 km) north of San Antonio. Site open, tower closed. Owner/site manager: Lake Canyon Yacht Club.

Llano County Lighthouses
* Horseshoe Bay (Lake Lyndon B. Johnson)
1972. Active; white light, characteristics unknown. 55 ft (17 m) square tower with a large observation room; the navigation beacon is on the roof. Rubi Bothwell has a 2018 photo, M.S. Zakeer has a closeup, and Google has a satellite view. The tower also includes chimes that announce the hours and are also played on special occasions. In 2014 a fund drive was underway to raise $80-100,000 to refurbish the lighthouse. In 2015 a complete renovation of the lighthouse, including siding, roof, interior and exterior lighting, and a new entrance gate, was completed at a cost of over $105,000. Located at the end of Lighthouse Drive and of a long dike extending into Lake Lyndon B. Johnson at Horseshoe Bay in Llano County, about 45 mi (72 km) northwest of Austin. Accessible by walking the dike (the entry is gated but visitors are not excluded). Site open, tower status unknown. Owner: Horseshoe Bay Property Owners Association. Site manager: Friends of the Horseshoe Bay Lighthouse.
Lake Buchanan
1984. Reactivated (inactive ca. 1990-2006); focal plane 140 ft (42.5 m); rotating white light. 110 ft (33.5 m) square concrete tower with gallery, topped by a large square observation room. The lighthouse is actually painted in a red and white checkerboard pattern, but from each side it appears to have red and white horizontal bands. A photo is at right, another good 2008 photo is available, and Google has a street view and a satellite view. Built privately by Raymond Barker, this lighthouse was repossessed by a bank in 1990 and deteriorated for years. In 2006 it was purchased by Harold Riley of Austin, owner of the Citizens Insurance Company. Riley restored and reactivated the lighthouse; in 2008 it was repainted with the checkerboard daymark. Located near Buchanan Dam off TX 29 about halfway between Burnet and Llano in Llano County and 60 mi (96 km) northwest of Austin. Site and tower closed, although the lighthouse can be seen from the state highway. Owner/site manager: private. ARLHS USA-1408.
Lake Buchanan Light
Lake Buchanan Light, Llano, March 2009
Flickr Creative Commons photo by larkspurlazuli

Information available on lost lighthouses:

Notable faux lighthouses:

Adjoining pages: North: Southeast Texas | South: Tamaulipas

Return to the Lighthouse Directory index

Checked and revised September 2, 2018. Lighthouses: 38. Site copyright 2018 Russ Rowlett and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.