National Geographic’s new series, THE WATCH features Race Rock Lighthouse

by Jane Ahrens


THURSDAY, APRIL 9, 16, 23, and 30 AT 10PM ET/PT

New London, CT: New London Maritime Society announced today that historic landmark Race Rock Lighthouse will be featured in National Geographic Channel’s new series, THE WATCH premiering Thursday, April 9, at 10 PM ET/PT. Race Rock Lighthouse, acquired by New London Maritime Society from the federal government in 2013, is one of four locations used in the series. Filming was done over the month of August, 2014.


Over the course of THE WATCH (four one-hour episodes) the lives of four people – Cheetoh, Bill, Dave, and Brooks – each living in separate remote locations, enduring isolation, are revealed to surveillance cameras capturing their every move. Utilizing fixed and their own hand-held cameras, viewers will be privy to each of their movements as their stories unfold. Watch Brooks as she refurbishes and restores Rack Rock Lighthouse. They’re all keeping a cautious watch over their domain…and are being watched by you.

Airing on the National Geographic Channel at 10:00 pm:
Thursday, April 9 Population One
Thursday, April 16 Bad Moon Rising
Thursday, April 23 Pick Your Poison
Thursday, April 30 The Vanishing

Race Rock Light Station
Station established: 1871, Automated: 1959
Focal height 60 ft.
Owned: New London Maritime Society, 2013

This wonderful granite lighthouse erected on a mostly submerged ledge at the western end of Fishers Island was completed in 1878 after seven years of amazing determination on the part of the engineers and builders, among these New London’s Captain T.A. Scott. Strong, fast currents at this location (hence the name The Race) and conflicting seas are the normal conditions here where Long Island Sound, Block Island Sound and Fishers Island Sound all meet. Due to the large losses in lives, ships and cargo on the ledge over the years it was decided that a lighthouse was essential regardless of the difficulty and expense in building it.

Appointed as Race Rock Lighthouse Keeper in 1880 Thomas A. Carroll would row his boat across Fishers Island Sound to Noank for supplies and to visit his family. In January of 1885 a severe storm blew in catching Mr. Carroll ashore. The storm lasted several days and finally the Keeper decided he could stay away from his duties at the lighthouse no longer. He was last seen alive rowing out through the powerful waves alone in his small boat.

The expense and difficulty in building traditional lighthouses in remote and submerged locations brought about the development of the cast-iron caisson foundation for use on such sites. Latimer Reef Lighthouse in Fishers Island Sound is a good example of this type. Race Rock Lighthouse was one of the very last traditional masonry lighthouses to be built in the United States in such a location.

Featured Photo

USCG Eagle passing the Race early morning March 18, 2023 on her return from the Chesapeake Bay . Photo Credit Marlin Bloethe

A Fishers Island Community Center Program and the accompanying Fog Horn eNewsletter serve as the communications resource for the Fishers Island community. The content – news, calendar, links and photos, milestones, ads, and more create a clear image of Fishers to those on and off the island.

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