Mukilteo Light Station Historical Timeline

Architect Designer: Carl Leick. The lighthouse was built and constructed of fir wood at a cost of $27,000. The Tribune headlines read, “Lamp lit in new Mukilteo tower.” The newspaper proclaimed the Station to be the “Best Lighthouse on the Sound.”

The station consisted of:

  • A 38 foot wood tower with the lantern room fully enclosed by glass and vented to accomodate the smoke and fumes from the open lantern flame.
  • A Fresnel sextagon shaped lens that rotated by means of a clockwork weight and pulley system. It required winding every three hours. The flash was at five second intervals. The small sectional prismatic lenses through which the light passed increased its strength to about 7,000 candle power.
  • An oil lamp on the Fourth Order lens that required refilling every three hours and used approximately 243 gallons of coal oil per year.
  • A Cunningham eight foot diaphragm foghorn that was operated by two air compressors. The foghorn was shaped like a giant trumpet and protruded out the back wall of the lighthouse. It sounded a four second blast every 16 seconds.
  • A windmill powered water tower with oil and coal storage rooms beneath.
  • Two keepers’ living quarters.

Electricity installed.

Ownership of the Station transferred from the U.S. Lighthouse Service to the U.S. Coast Guard Service.

Coast Guard announced its intentions to replace the Fresnel lens with a modern optic. Residents’ protests saved the lens.

Placed on the National Register of Historic Sites.

Lens automated.

Coast Guard leased the lighthouse to the City of Mukilteo.

Tours started in the spring by volunteers from the Mukilteo Historical Society.

Fund raiser to replace lobby floor with commemorative tiles. The floor was finished in April 1997.

U.S. Coast Guard Families moved out of the two keeper’s houses.

City of Mukilteo paid for removal of toxic lead paint from the exteriors of the two keeper’s houses.

Ownership turned over to the City of Mukilteo and the Mukilteo Historical Society serve as docents, gardeners, and dedicated keepers.

A successful renomination of all the Light Stations’ buildings and grounds were made to the listing of The National Historic Register.

The City of Mukilteo, with approval throughout the process by the State Historical Preservation Society, gave the Station some modifications for handicap accessibility, the connecting and widening of all sidewalks within the grounds and repairs to some windows and doors.

Lighthouse Keepers

Since 1906 there have been 18 official lighthouse keepers assigned to the Mukilteo Light Station. A plaque commemorating all but the last keeper can be found on the lighthouse wall. Due to its location and amenities, the light station was considered a choice assignment that was often given to keepers as a reward for outstanding service. The keeper and his assistant maintained a constant six hour shift rotation to keep the light operational until electricity arrived in 1927.