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Here is a little fascinating history about the Frying Pan Tower:
Formerly the U.S. Coastguard Frying Pan Light Station, is a lighthouse situated at the end of the Frying Pan Shoals, 32 miles south of Bald Head Island N.C. This is the southernmost end of the feared “Graveyard of the Atlantic” which stretches up to the northern end of the Outer Banks of N.C.The shallow waters of the shoals (only 35-50 feet under the Tower) made ship navigation treacherous so in 1854 a lightship was stationed there. For 110 years, except for a few years during The War Between the States and WWII, crews manned the lightship 24/7 in all weather. In 1960 construction began on a permanent steel structure with a lantern house to replace the lightship. The structure was a modified Texas drilling platform, called a “Texas Tower” designed to provide housing and support for the light, warning ships of the shallow waters.
The Light Station was automated in 1979 with repair and maintenance crews stationed at the USGC Station Oak Island providing emergency and routine maintenance. The advent of Global Positioning Systems and radar made the Tower obsolete so the Coast Guard abandoned the station in 2004. Due to the fact that the area under the Frying Pan Shoals is a protected reef, the original idea of destroying the tower and relocating part of it as an artificial reef or of recovering it for scrap was abandoned.
The Frying Pan Tower, no longer a commissioned lightstation, was left abandoned until 2010 when Richard Neal, a software engineer from Mint Hill, NC saw a listing for the Tower on a government surplus sale site. The Frying Pan Tower restoration project was born!