Point Pinos Lighthouse was built in 1855 to guide ships on the Pacific coast of California. It is the oldest continuously operating lighthouse on the West Coast of the United States and even the lens is original. Alcatraz Island Lighthouse preceded Point Pinos by 8 months, but was replaced in 1909 by the expanding military prison. It is still an active Coast Guard aid to navigation. Museum exhibits and other functions are operated by the city of Pacific Grove.