From the Annals of the Coast – In 1851, the United States approved a contract to construct a lighthouse on South Padre Island. Known as the Port Isabel Lighthouse, construction was completed in 1852. It was one of 16 lighthouses constructed on the Texas coast and the only one open to the public at the Port Isabel State Historical Site. The PIL served as a beacon for more than 60 years but became obsolete and was extinguished in 1905. The lighthouse fell into neglect until the Texas State Parks Board provided funds for restoration in 1947. The historic landmark has become a popular tourist attraction for visitors to South Texas The PIL was restored in 2000 and returned to the appearance it had following its last major operational renovation in 1880.