New London - $3.95

New London

New London Ledge Light, New London, Connecticut

New London Ledge Lighthouse One of the last lighthouses built in New England, the brick and granite structure is unusual for an offshore location. It's said local residents wanted the building to blend in with their stately shorefront homes and create a pleasing visual presentation.
Legend tells that the infamous ghost, Ernie, is the spirit of a keeper who, in 1936, learned his wife had run off with the captain of the Block Island Ferry. Unable to handle this news, the keeper proceeded to throw himself from the roof of the lighthouse into the sea--or perhaps he simply fell to his death. In any event, since then unexplained happenings have been attributed to "Ernie's" spectre: doors open and close themselves, televisions turn on and off, decks are mysteriously swabbed, the fog horn and light behave erratically and securely tied boats are set adrift. One disgruntled keeper noted that the entire lighthouse was "Ernie's domain'.

More Information

What people say...

New London Ledge Light, New London Connecticut

New London Ledge Light

In the early 1900s, the city of New London became an increasing busy port as new industry replaced whaling and the existing harbor light was not adequate to guide mariners around the dangerous ledge at the harbor entrance.

A lighthouse offshore, at the eastern end of Long Island Sound near the entrance to New London Harbor, was petitioned as early as 1890, but construction did not commence until 1906 and the work not completed until 1909. The light originally was called Southwest Ledge Light, but soon renamed New- London Ledge to avoid confusion with the light in New Haven Harbor, also a "Southwest Ledge Light".

The cast-iron lantern originally held a fourth-order Fresnel lens, exhibiting three white flashes, followed by a red flash at 30 second intervals. In 1911 a fog signal was added to replace the one discontinued at the harbor light. A modern optic was installed in 1984.

Duty at this lighthouse at once offered solitude prized by many but also isolation which could drive others to madness; close quarters often resulted in heated "verbal exchanges". The wafting scent of summer barbecues coupled with the sight of young ladies at the beach (binoculars were kept at hand), made drive at a "more social" shore location all the more appealing. And there was the spirit of Ernie to contend with.


New London Ledge assy.
Return to Light House page

Return to Home page