Little Red Lighthouse

The most beloved lighthouse in America, thanks to the children’s book “The Little Red Lighthouse and the Great Grey Bridge” by Hildegard H. Swift, illustrated by Lynd Ward. The Little Red Lighthouse is actually correctly known as the Jeffreys Hook Lighthouse.

The current Jeffreys Hook Lighthouse was constructed in 1920 and commissioned in 1921, the second light on this site. Its purpose was to aid the navigation of shipping up the Hudson, the major transportation artery between New York City and the interior ports of Albany, Troy and beyond.

After the George Washington Bridge was constructed in the 1930s it was determined that the lighthouse was no longer needed and it was deactivated in 1947, and was scheduled for demolition. However, the children’s book popularized the little lighthouse dwarfed by the bridge, and the millions of children tho loved The Little Red Lighthouse spoke out saving it from destruction. It was later deeded to New York City.

Visiting the Lighthouse

The lighthouse is open on a regular basis for tours from Spring thru Fall, led by Urban Park Rangers. Call ahead for schedule and information. Inside the lighthouse are historical exhibits on the lighthouse and area.

To reach the lighthouse, located in Fort Washington Park, drive your car or take the “A” train to West 181 Street. Walk west on 181 St, down the hill toward the Hudson River, cross the pedestrian foot bridge just north of 181 St. and follow the winding path into the park and the lighthouse.

United States Coast Guard Descriptiom & Photo

  • Light first lit: 1889
  • Year Current Tower(s) First Lit: 1895
  • Operational? NO
  • Automated? n/a
  • Deactivated: 1948

Lighthouse Contacts & Address

City of New York Department of Parks & Recreation
Dyckman Farmhouse Museum
4881 Broadway
New York, NY 10034