The Light

For most of the Walton Lighthouse’s active life, light from two large, flat kerosene wicks, magnified by means of a Fresnel lens with a 16 inch (41cm) reflector, shone through its brass lantern. It used kerosene the same as an ordinary oil lamp found in the homes. A black screen revolved around the outside of the lamp so that the light was visible 10 seconds, dark 3 seconds, visible 4 seconds and dark 3 seconds (occulting), through a repeating cycle. This sequence was printed on nautical charts of the day. It was unique to the Walton light allowing mariners to accurately distinguish the Walton light from others in the bay area. The screen was operated by a clock mechanism that had to be hand wound each night by cranking a handle for about 60 turns. In 1986, the light was converted to an automatic system with an electronic flasher installed. In 1999 a gas light identical to the original was installed. The tower now features an original ‘Methane’ lamp.


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