Point Hicks Lighthouse

Originally called Point Hicks, then later named Cape Everard, the former name was reinstated in 1970, ending a long running controversy over the name of Captain Cook’s first landfall in Australia.

History

The Point Hicks Lighthouse was built in 1887-88, and was first lit in May 1890. In a break with tradition at the time, the tower was constructed of concrete. The two keepers quarters were built from timber.

The kerosene lamp and clock mechanism were upgraded to electric operation with the connection of mains power in 1965. The light was more recently converted to solar power.

The lighthouse is believed to be haunted by the ghost of former Lightkeeper Christofferson.

A unusual feature of the light tower is its cast iron spiral staircase, which has162 steps cantilevered from the walls, rather than the traditional stone steps which are built around a central column.

Originally access to Point Hicks was by sea. In 1920 a return trip, by land to Cann River, 47 kilometres away from the light station, took two days. By 1946 the journey had been reduced to 36 hours by a combination of horse and jeep. During the early 1950s it was still a 12-hour ordeal. Today, the journey is possible in 50 minutes but is still treated with respect.

The light was known as Cape Everard from 1843 until 1970 when it was changed back to Point Hicks. It seem that there was some doubt to whether this was Cook’s first landfall in Australia, in 1770, because Cook had not taken account of crossing the International Date Line when recording his log. Therefore it was not challenged when the cape was latter named Everard. In the lead up to Cooks bi-centenary research was undertaken and the case was presented successfully to restore the rightful name.

The area remains largely unchanged from the time it was first sighted back in 1770.

 

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Green Cape

Green Cape

Green Cape
Green Cape Lighthouse Rd, Green Cape NSW 2551, Australia

Green Cape

Direction

Gabo Island

Gabo Island

Gabo Island
Unnamed Road, Mallacoota VIC 3892, Australia

Gabo Island

Direction

Point Hicks

Point Hicks

Point Hicks
Lighthouse Track, Tamboon VIC 3880, Australia

Point Hicks

Direction

Cliffy Island

Cliffy Island

Cliffy Island
Victoria, Australia

Cliffy Island

Direction

South East Point (Wilsons Promontory)

South East Point (Wilsons Promontory)

South East Point (Wilsons Promontory)
Unnamed Road, Wilsons Promontory VIC 3960, Australia

South East Point (Wilsons Promontory)

Direction

Deal Island

Deal Island

Deal Island
Unnamed Road, Tasmania 7255, Australia

Deal Island

Direction

Keepers

We need your help in compiling a list of keepers for this lighthouse. If you have any information then send it to keeper@lighthouses.org.au.

Please include this lighthouse’s name, the keepers full name and what years they were keepers. Also include the same information for any other lights they were on.

Technical Details

First Exhibited
Permanent Tower
CurrentTower
Architect
Status
Location
Original Optic
Current Optic
Automated
Demanned
Construction
Height
Elevation
Range
Character
Intensity
Light Source
Power Source
Operator
Custodian
Notes

  NB: Information is historical data and is not for navigational purposes.

Access

The reserve is under a private lease and it is advisable to make your presence known to the lessee. Last information was the closest vehicular access was to a car park three kilometres away. The rest of the journey made on foot.

Site Access

The lighthouse grounds are open all year round.

Tours

Tours are available  parkweb.vic.gov.au/explore/parks/point-hicks-lighthouse-reserve  External link

Accommodation

Lighthouse accommodation is available  www.parkstay.vic.gov.au/point-hicks-lighthouse  External link

Links

A mystery of history – the Point Hicks lighthouse – ABC Radio Perth Nov 2011  External link