Heceta Head Light, Florence, Oregon  

Heceta Head Light, Florence, Oregon

Heceta Head Light is perched 205 feet above the Pacific Ocean on Oregon"s central coast. The headland is named for Spanish Basque explorer Don Bruno de Heceta, who led a secret expedition in 1775 to bolster Spain"s claim to the Pacific Coast of North America. Having sailed from Mexico, by the time the voyage reached these shores, the crew was ravaged by scurvy and Heceta made the call to turn back—but not before he became the first to map and record a written description of the mouth of the Columbia River as well as this rocky 1,000-foot-high headland that would eventually bear his name. By the 19th century, seafarers making their way up and down the coast made the call for a lighthouse to guide their way. Construction of the 56-foot-tall lighthouse was complicated by the steep bluffs and remote location, but the first light beam pierced through the darkness on March 30, 1894.

© Tom Schwabel/Tandem Stills + Motion

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