Pemaquid Point Light in Maine's Damariscotta region
© Tom Whitney/Adobe Stoc
Celebrating 200 years of statehood
We're wandering out onto the striated coastal rocks of Maine's Pemaquid Point at sunrise to mark 200 years since Maine joined the Union as the 23rd US state. With roughly 5,000 miles of jagged, rocky coastline, Maine is studded with dozens of lighthouses, and the light at Pemaquid Point is one of the most celebrated—and historic. First, that history: President John Quincy Adams commissioned the lighthouse in 1827, but it needed to be rebuilt in 1835 after the original began falling apart. (Note: Don't use salt water when mixing your mortar.) Maine residents chose the Pemaquid Point Light for display on their state's coin as part of the US 50 State Quarters Program.
Visitors to the lighthouse are invited to climb the spiral staircase of the 38-foot tower. At the top, they can see the beacon's original Fresnel lens, which is still in use. Gazing out the window offers a superb vantage point of the ridged coastline below. The ancient metamorphic coastal rock is striped with lighter igneous rock, creating banded ledges and lots of scenic drama.