Oregon was a rough place to build a lighthouse. Ships that traveled the rugged Pacific Coast needed beacons to navigate the shoreline, but those same conditions that plagued sailors plagued the builders of lighthouses designed to help them.
In 1857, crews erected a light at the mouth of the Umpqua River, and four years later it collapsed into the river. In 1896, the Coquille River Lighthouse was constructed on a jetty, but that didn’t stop a schooner from crashing into it after only a year. The Cape Blanco Lighthouse required heroic efforts from its keepers for decades, who fixed