The New Canal Lighthouse was built in 1838 and takes its name from a failed 1830s effort to link Lake Ponchartrain with downtown New Orleans by canal. The original lighthouse was rebuilt in 1855 and again during the 1890s always damaged by hurricanes.
A new tower was constructed in 1901: a 32 ft. (10 m) square 2-story frame keeper's quarters on pilings, surmounted by a square cylindrical tower. The building painted white with red roofs had a fifth-order Fresnel lens. Since that time some additions and renovations brought the lighthouse up to modern standards. It is located on Lake Pontchartrain at West End Boulevard and Lakeshore Drive in New Orleans (30°02′37″N 90°06′47″W).
The lighthouse was heavily damaged and virtually destroyed after suffering double hits in 2005 from Hurricane Katrina (August, 29) and Hurricane Rita (September, 22). By the fall of 2007, the wreckage of the building was dismantled and stored for use in rebuilding the structure.
In 2012, thanks to the efforts of the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation, the lighthouse was rebuilt and relit on 26 September. The only significant difference between the previous structure and the new structure is that the new lighthouse is built higher up on stilts, to help protect it from future storm surges. For an overall cost of about $1 million, the iconic guardian of the New Orleans lakefront reopened on April 18, 2013 as the new home of the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation. It has been renamed the New Canal Lighthouse Museum and Education Center.
The U.S. Postal Service issued on
December 1, 2012 the One
Dollar Waves of Color stamp, one of four sheets of elegant stamps denominated
at four different rates: $1, $2, $5, and $10. The One Dollar Waves of Color
stamp shows variously colored undulating lines against a white background. A
portion of the left side of the stamp provides white space to display the
numeral 1. The stamp also includes its denomination written out as One Dollar.
The definitive stamp “American Clock” features an artistic rendering of the dial, or face, of a banjo clock. Constructed of brass and steel in 1805, the banjo clock depicted on the stamp has a painted iron dial and a mahogany case crowned by a brass eagle.