St. George Island's Historic Lighthouse Beckons Visitors to Barrier Islands Near Florida's Big Bend

    By Hilda Mitrani

    St. George Island, located just off the coast of Apalachicola, is one of four barrier islands in the Big Bend coast of Florida. They have a dramatic story to tell about their lighthouse. You see, the Cape St. George Lighthouse succumbed to storms and fell into the water in October 2005.

    Today, the lighthouse sits safely on St. George Island. Back in 1995, a campaign had been underway for nearly a decade to save the light but Mother Nature was winning. When it fell, the extraordinary members of the St. George Lighthouse Association worked with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection and private contractors to salvage the pieces from the Gulf.

    Volunteers cleaned the mortar off thousands of old bricks. Using the original plans (circa 1852) obtained from the National Archives in Washington, D.C., they reconstructed the light using more than 22,000 of the original bricks. Quite a feat born of dedication and love!

    If you visit, there is a lovely shaded picnic spot called Marion Millender Site on St. George Sound. It is on the water in Eastpoint on George Patton Road (SR 30). From here it is only a short distance to the St. George Island Bridge Fishing Pier, a remnant of an old bridge.

    Left standing on both sides of the Sound, these piers today are popular fishing spots. This story by Insider Terry Tomalin has more detailed information about fishing in the area.

    I'm so grateful to my friends, with whom I share a deep love of Florida. Sometimes they write to tell me about their favorite spots, such as this detailed information about places to visit in and around St. George Island, Cape St. George Island and St. Vincent Island.