Execution Rocks Light

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The rocks here were once a place where Revolutionary War criminals and other wrongdoers were executed. They were chained here at low tide and faced a slow, cruel drowning as the tide rose. The rocks were long a danger to ships, so the lighthouse was built in 1847. In the 1920s, the waters were also used as a body-dumping ground for serial killer Carl Panzram’s victims. Given its history, it’s no wonder that at the lighthouse witnesses have reported strange sounds and ghostly apparitions.

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    Geographic Information

    United States

    Get Directions »
    40.8780518, -73.7376648
    Nassau County, New York
    Nearest Towns:
    Sands Point, NY (2.1 mi.)
    Manorhaven, NY (2.7 mi.)
    Port Washington North, NY (3.0 mi.)
    New Rochelle, NY (3.3 mi.)
    Larchmont, NY (3.5 mi.)
    Baxter Estates, NY (3.7 mi.)
    Pelham Manor, NY (3.8 mi.)
    Kings Point, NY (4.0 mi.)
    Port Washington, NY (4.2 mi.)
    Pelham, NY (4.3 mi.)


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    Comments (3)

    1. I lived for more than 20 years near Execution rock and it’s creepy looking but going out on boats we never saw anything. We discount legend of actual desath by execution. although in the suburbs of NYC today, in the revolution it was way out in the stix. more than a days ride.
      neither English nor American law has ever had execution by drowning, both using hanging as executioon and they were done in the middle of towns.

    2. I’ve dug around since my initial posting to try and find out about the name. the ‘executions’ were of ships hitting the unmarked rocks which are nearly completely submerged at high tide. That is why the light house was built. Dreadffully unromantic.

    3. I was a 1st class Engineman stationed at Execution Rocks Lighthouse while I was in the Coast Guard in the 1960’s. If it was haunted, the ghosts left me alone!

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