120 feet above sea level sits the Elbow Reef Lighthouse, providing mariners a beacon of light since 1864 to warn against the treacherous shoals and reefs lining the shoreline of Elbow Cay. Since the colonization of Abaco's outer islands by British loyalists after the revolutionary war, the unpredictable waters proved difficult for shipping interests. Many ships, cargoes and lives were lost during transits to and from the Bahamas. In 1836, the British Imperial Lighthouse Service started to erect lighthouses in strategic locations along the Bahamian coastline.
Of the 11 light-stations in the Bahamas, only the Elbow Reef Light is in its original working condition: non-electrified and manually powered. The lighthouse continues to warn mariners against the Elbow Reef (in the Atlantic on the east side of elbow cay) and is the most popular tourist attraction in the Abaco cays. The efforts of the Elbow Reef Lighthouse Society have allowed the lighthouse to be preserved in its 'working condition'.