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Morris Island Lighthouse, Folly Beach

4.6
#8 of 27 in Things to do in Folly Beach
Lighthouse · Tourist Spot
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Morris Island Light is a lighthouse on Morris Island in South Carolina. The light stands on the southern side of the entrance to Charleston Harbor, north of the City of Folly Beach. The lighthouse was named to the National Register of Historic Places in 1982.
The lighthouse is unusual in that it now stands several hundred feet offshore. When constructed in 1876 the light was approximately 1200ft from the water's edge. However, the construction in 1889 of the jetties which protect the shipping lanes leading to Charleston Harbor altered ocean currents, resulting in the rapid erosion of Morris Island and the destruction of many structures and historical sites (such as Fort Wagner). By 1938 the shoreline had reached the lighthouse, forcing its automation as it was no longer safe or practical to keep it manned. In 1962 the Morris Island Light was decommissioned and replaced by the new Charleston Light, located on Sullivan's Island at the north end of the harbor.
The Morris Island Light, located on Morris Island, at the entrance to the harbor of Charleston, SC, was one of the colonial lights turned over to the Federal Government under the terms of the act of August 7, 1789. The light was in a brick tower, built by the Colony of South Carolina in 1767. On May 7, 1800, Congress appropriated $5,000 for repairing the lighthouse. In 1838 the light was described as a revolving light, the tower being 102ft from the base to the lantern. A new first-order lens was installed in the tower on January 1, 1858.
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Morris Island Lighthouse reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
427 reviews
Google
4.8
TripAdvisor
  • The walk down to the beach was great! The paved walkway easily accommodated my husband's wheelchair. The beach was not crowded and we spent a good bit of time just enjoying seeing the lighthouse... 
    The walk down to the beach was great! The paved walkway easily accommodated my husband's wheelchair. The beach was not crowded and we spent a good bit of time just enjoying seeing the lighthouse...  more »
  • Short walk to a little beach...the lighthouse is just beyond the beach. Nice excursion. I recomend it for families with children 
    Short walk to a little beach...the lighthouse is just beyond the beach. Nice excursion. I recomend it for families with children  more »
Google
  • Absolutely stunning! I've been visiting this area at the end of Folly Beach for many years, and it never gets old. There is parking along the side of the road. From the end of the driveable road, there is a short walk down a paved road, then across thick sand to the beach. The paved road has some really neat graffiti. Although the Lighthouse is a good ways out in the water, it can be seen quite easily. In the far distance, the splendor of the Ravenel Bridge adorns the landscape. The winds and the water and the waves change, but the old Lighthouse remains. At low tide, there's plenty of extra beach to explore and enjoy. At high tide, you still get a great view of the Lighthouse. The water in the channel is swift and treacherous, so swimming he is NOT permitted. Also, the is a small dead tree, gorgeous, driftwood, area. Sunrises hear are indescribable.
  • Great old lighthouse located on a semi hidden stretch of beach. Lots of birds, sea turtle nesting sites, deadwood, and almost no people make this a great area. Take the little hike down the graffiti road and you're rewarded with great views, clear waters, and sand bars. I went on a Saturday and Folly Beach was packed but this area was open with almost no people.

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