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The Deadly History Of This Oregon Lighthouse Is Terrifying But True

Located a mile off the Oregon coast is a mysterious lighthouse perched atop a jagged basalt. Ravaged by the wind and sea, the decrepit structure stands dormant amidst thunderous waves.

Tillamook Rock Lighthouse, commonly known as Terrible Tilly, was built between 1880-1881. Even before the light was first lit, the lighthouse became notorious for the immense danger put upon anyone who traveled there. Two ships were devastatingly wrecked during the construction; one at the very beginning of the project and one just a week before completion. Between the two, the only survivor was one captain’s dog.

After 500 painstaking days of construction, the light tower was finally lit. The light keepers had a very difficult job due to the complete isolation and the tumultuous weather. The lighthouse was hit periodically with violent storms that caused floods, broken windows and more. In 1934, the biggest storm yet hit Terrible Tilly. Boulders were dislodged and sent hurling at the lighthouse, badly damaging the light tower and severing the light keeper’s communication with others.

The lighthouse was deactivated in 1957 after 76 tumultuous years, but the story doesn’t end there. In 1980 the lighthouse was sold to Eternity at Sea Columbarium, a business that offered the opportunity to store cremated remains. Thirty urns found their final resting place there before the columbarium lost their license, and remain there to this day.

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