On th at day, our 1st order Fresnel lens was put back into service after being repaired. In 1986, a vandal shot the lens at the top of the Lighthouse tower damaging 19 of the prisms.
Beginning in 1980, the Junior Service League led a massive community effort to restore the St. Augustine Light Station. The restoration of the Keepers’ House was completed in 1990 after a disastrous fire in 1970. The League opened the Lighthouse Museum in 1988 with exhibits in the Keepers’ House and a space for community events on the second floor. The restoration of the Lighthouse tower followed with its opening in 1991. The Junior Service League raised over $1.2 million ($2.4 million in today’s dollars) for the renovations. Their work restored and repaired the Lighthouse’s original 1874 first order Fresnel lens, the first project of this type in the country.
On May 22, 1993, the lens was placed back into service and lit during the first Lighthouse Festival, known today at Night Fest. The Museum celebrated with a public event that included a segment on CNN that was then broadcast nationwide. Today, the Museum continues to care and maintain our lens ensuring it will continue to shine into the future.