As a longtime visitor to Aquinnah and the lighthouse, I was struck with concern when this past summer I discovered the possible fate of the light. I learned that the lighthouse currently sits dangerously close to the edge of the beautiful Gay Head Cliffs, a mere 46 feet away from the Vineyard Sound, and it is predicted that at the current erosion rate, which is about 1.8 feet a year with accelerated sliding due to groundwater, within 2 years the lighthouse will be too close to move safely and will eventually fall off the cliff if nothing is done. The thought of Aquinnah without the lighthouse is almost unimaginable to me and many others, and I was inspired to do a research project on the light when the option was presented to me through my school. As I delved into my basic research, I was overwhelmed with the amount of love the lighthouse was receiving from all over the world. So many people had such deep connections to this place and really wanted to share the history and stories. I was truly moved by the overwhelming support I was finding and decided to do my project specifically on the emotional and historical significance of the lighthouse. As my final product for this project, I decided to create this blog, a place where people can post memories, photos, information, and stories about the lighthouse. Hopefully we can spread around the love and help raise awareness of how important the light is together!
~Julia Nelson, High Schooler from Concord, Massachusetts