Painting by Florida Artist - Roger Bansemer
Originally built in 1812 and rebuilt in 1859, the 163 foot red brick lighthouse can be seen from 19 miles away. In 1873, the keeper's cottage - large enough to house two keepers and their families - was completed, and the tower painted. Because the four lights on the Outer Banks were so similar, the Lighthouse Board designed striking patterns for each to make them easily distinguishable. On April 14, 1873, Cape Lookout Lighthouse was painted with large checkers that appear as alternating black and white diamonds. Following the traditional day-mark aids to navigation, the black checkers are oriented north and south toward the shallow waters of the shoals and around the headlands, while the white checkers are oriented east and west facing the deeper waters.