Lighthouses of Australia Inc Parks Victoria
Grant & Tracey Maizels' Lighthouses Australian Maritime Safety Authority
Garry Searle's Lighthouses Australia Australian National Maritime Museum
Kevin Mulcahy's Australian Lighthouses Australian Heritage Commission
Victorian Heritage Register


The following is a short list of resources regarding the subject of lighthouses of Australia. Although this website is devoted to Victorian lighthouses, I have included resources for lighthouses from other states.

Australian lighthouse books are often very hard to come by, as many of them are out of print. Books that are still in print can generally be sourced through visitor's centres near lighthouses, maritime museums bookshops or directly from the author. Sometimes you can be lucky and find books through second hand book dealers or through, a service that searches the inventories of subscribing booksellers.

Victorian lighthouse books  |  General books  |  Other books

Government documents  |  Pamphlets, booklets & photocopies


BEACONS OF HOPE - An Early History of Cape Otway and King Island Lighthouses
Traces the discovery of Bass Strait and the establishment of the lighthouses at Cape Otway and Cape Wickham on the northern tip of King Island, and Currie Harbour Lighthouse on King Island's West Coast

Author: Donald Walker
Published: 1998, Athelstone Trust
Description: Soft cover book, 150pp, ISBN 0 646 35985 1
Source: National Maritime Museum or contact the author at 8 Crisp St, Essendon VIC 3040

LEADING LIGHTS - The Story of the Warrnambool Lighthouses and Lighthouse Keepers
The Warrnambool Lighthouses, situated on Flagstaff Hill overlooking Lady Bay, came into being following the exploration of Bass Strait and the increase in shipping in the Strait

Author: Elizabeth Douglas
Published: 1998, Covell Publications, Warrnambool
Description: Soft cover book, 112pp, ISBN 0 949068 27 6
Source: Covell Publications, PO Box 59, Warrnambool VIC 3280

THE LIGHTHOUSES OF VICTORIA - A Second Book of Paintings, Poetry and Prose
Paintings of Victoria's lighthouses, beacons and other lights, each painting accompanied by a description and a short poem

Author: Dacre Smith
Published: 1980
Description: Hard cover book, 50pp, ISBN 0 9595198 2 3
Source: Out of print

THE WHITE QUEEN - A History of the Split Point Lighthouse, Aireys Inlet, above the Eagle Nest Reef in Bass Strait, Victoria
A detailed history and description of Split Point Lighthouse

Authors: R V Carr and K L Cecil
Published: 1986, Neptune Press
Description: Hard cover book, ISBN 0949583618
Source: Out of print


FROM DUSK TILL DAWN - A History of Australian Lighthouses
The "holy grail" of Australian lighthouse books, it describes the early development of colonial lighthouse services, followed by the establishment of the Commonwealth Lighthouse Service and the changes that occurred throughout the 1930s, Second World War, and beyond to the present day. Beautifully illustrated with colour & B&W photos & drawings.
(Be prepared to search for this book, and pay $$$).

Author: Gordon Reid
Published: 1988, Macmillan
Description: Hard cover book, 264pp, ISBN 0 333 47709 X
Source: Out of print - search second hand outlets & Biblioquest

LIGHTHOUSES OF AUSTRALIA - Images from the End of and Era
A pictorial guide and history to all of the lighthouses around the Australian coast

Author: John Ibbotson
Published: 2001, Australian Lighthouse Traders
Description: Hard cover book, 288pp, ISBN 0 646-41674-X
Source: Australian Lighthouse Traders, 4/19 Elm Street, Surrey Hills VIC 3127
See also: John Ibbotson's website

An information guide containing details of how to visit selected lighthouses around the Australian coast, with specifics on access, directions, costs, and what to expect once there

Author: John Ibbotson
Published: 2003, Australian Lighthouse Traders
Description: Hard cover book, 264pp, ISBN 0 9581214-1-9
Source: Australian Lighthouse Traders, 4/19 Elm Street, Surrey Hills VIC 3127
See also: John Ibbotson's website

The story of placing lighthouses around the coast of the Australian continent. Also a story about people - navigators, pioneers, convicts and especially lighthouse keepers.

Author: Valmai Philips
Published: 1997, Rigby Limited
Description: Hard cover book, 222 pp, ISBN 0 7270 0498 0
Source: Out of print


An autobiography by Margaret Hill, who emigrated to Australia in the 1950s. Having left a comfortable home, her family found life in a migrant hostel primitive, with poor food, hot corrugated iron rooms and very basic facilities. To escape these conditions, they took a job on an isolated lighthouse.

Author: Margaret Hill
Published: 1999, Cromwell Publishers, Manchester UK
Description: Paperback, 165pp, ISBN 1 901679 46 2
Source: Chronicles Bookshop, St Kilda, Australia or from Amazon UK
See also: Margaret Hill's webpage

GUIDING LIGHTS - Tasmania's Lighthouses and Lighthousemen
A comprehensive record of Tasmania's lighthouses. The book relates the colour and drama in the lives of the lighthouse keeper and their families.

Author: Kathleen M Stanley
Published: 1991, St. David's Park Publishing
Description: Soft cover book, ISBN 0 7246 2568 2
Source: Out of print

Describes the history of the lighthouse including the keepers

Author: Cyril Ayris
Published: 1996, Cyril Ayris Freelance
Description: Soft cover book, ISBN 0646277871
Source: Augusta-Margaret River Tourist Bureau, PO Box 240, Augusta WA 6290

LIGHTHOUSE OF TRAGEDY - The Story of Bustard Head Lighthouse, Queensland's First Coast Light
Describes the mammoth task of building the unique, pre-fabricated cast iron lighthouse, the alteration it has undergone and the changing lifestyles of its keepers through 118 years.

Author: Stuart Buchanan
Published: 1999, Coral Coast Publications
Description: Soft cover book, 244pp, ISBN 0 9586433 0 X
Source: Contact the author at Coral Coast Publications, PO Box 90, Samford QLD 4520

History of the location of the Barranjoey Lighthouse, NSW

Author: Jervis Sparks
Published: 1992
Description: Soft cover book, 202pp, ISBN 0 646 07032 0
Source: Out of print

Records the story of the authors life and work on Queensland's lightstations

Author: Stuart Buchanan
Published: 1994, Coral Coast Publications (reprinted 1997 & 2000) 
Description: Soft cover book, 280pp, ISBN 0 646 18458 X
Source: Contact the author at Coral Coast Publications, PO Box 90, Samford QLD 4520

The story of the people who have been drawn to Montague Island NSW, whether for work in such a remote and lonely location, for amusement and sport, or to appreciate the extraordinary wealth of wildlife which finds sanctuary within its shores.

Author: Laurelle Pacey
Published: 2001
Description: Soft cover book, 72 pp, ISBN 0 9578487 1 4
Source: Contact the author at PO Box 439, Narooma NSW 2546

WHITE TOWERS - the Illawarra Lighthouses
A history of the lighthouses on the Illawarra Coast (Crookhaven Heads to Cape Bailey). Also includes details on the recent restoration of the Breakwater light in Wollongong Harbour.

Author: A P Fleming, with additional research and material by C Herben
Published: 2001, Illawarra Historical Society
Description: Soft cover book, ISBN 0 909 164 18 5
Source: Illawarra Historical Society, PO Box 241 Wollongong NSW 2500


LIGHTHOUSES IN AUSTRALIA - A Guide to Records held by the Australian Archives
A guide listing records held by the Australian Archives regional offices relating to the administration and operation of lighthouses.

Catalogue: Australian Archives, Subject Guide No. 1. XII
Published: 1991, Canberra, AGPS
Description: Bound paper report, 172pp, ISBN 0642166250
Source: Out of print


AUSTRALIAN LIGHTHOUSES - Around Australia Program
Describes types, styles and basic optics of lighthouses. Provided pictures, history and interesting events surrounding lights around the Australian coast

Author: Capt John Noble
Published: 1967, Nelson Doubleday (Australia)
Description: Pamphlet
Source: Out of print

Site inspection report

Author: P Worsley
Published: 1995
Catalogue: Report 103 - Department of Maritime Archaeology
Source: Photocopy available on request from WA Museum, Dept of Maritime Archaeology


Author: M Coleman
Published: Navaids Branch, Department of Transport, Western Australian Region
Source: Navaids Branch, Department of Transport, Western Australian Region

KEEPING THE LIGHT BURNING - a Cultural Resource Management Strategy for Lighthouses

Author: M Lorimer
Published: 1987
Catalogue: Bulletin of the Australian Institute for Maritime Archaeology, 11.1: 35-38
Source: Photocopy available on request from WA Museum, Dept of Maritime Archaeology

A simplified (children's) information booklet describing what lighthouses are, their history, and information about various Victorian lighthouses

Author: Polly Woodside Maritime Museum Education Service, National Trust
Description: Maritime Heritage Booklets series, No. 14, Booklet, 20pp
Source: Polly Woodside Maritime Museum, Lorimer Street East, Southbank VIC 3006

An account of the building of Lighthouses on Shortland Bluff at Queenscliff and on Point Lonsdale. A record of the men who tended the lights is included

Author: E T Raison
Published: 1996, Queenscliff Historical Publications
Description: Booklet, 24pp, ISBN 0 646 31507 2
Source: Queenscliff Historical Museum, PO Box 135, Queenscliff VIC 3225 or Information Victoria bookshop, 356 Collins Street Melbourne VIC 3000

A short history of the establishment of lights on the South Australian coast

Author: Ronald Parsons
Published: 1995, Revised Edition 1997
Description: Pamphlet, 30pp, ISBN 0 909418 57 8
Source: South Australia Maritime Museum

A study of lighthouses and light stations on the WA coast. Detailed information provided on each light

Author: D Cumming, M Glasson, M McCarthy
Catalogue: Report 100 - Department of Maritime Archaeology
Description: Photocopy
Source: Photocopy available on request from WA Maritime Museum Bookshop

A history of the lighthouse - its construction, use, dismantling and eventual relocation in Kingston SA

Author: V McLaren
Published: 1977, Kingston National Trust
Description: Pamphlet, ISBN 0 9596883 0 7
Source: Kingston National Trust, 15 Cooke St, Kingston SA 5275

Original list source: Lighthouses of Australia Inc
Page last updated:  28 December 2003

Copyright 1999-2003 Kristie Eggleston. All rights reserved.