Historic House Trust of New York City a not-for-profi t organization was created in 1989 to preserve and promote the historic houses located in New York City parks. Working in partnership with the City of New York Parks & Recreation, the goal of the Trust is to provide new levels of attention, support and specialized care to benefi t these museums.

Illustrated by Lynd Ward, this tale of the friendship between the tiny beacon and the George Washington Bridge introduced children around the world to the red, round, and very, very proud little lighthouse in New York.

Built in 1880, the 40-foot tower was moved in 1921 to Jeffrey’s Hook, a rocky point on the Hudson River near Manhattan’s northern edge. The Lighthouse warned ships away from the shore as they made their way down the narrow channel between New York and New Jersey.

However, when construction of the George Washington Bridge was completed in 1931, the brilliant lights of the bridge’s 600-foot towers overwhelmed the little Lighthouse. In 1947, it was officially decommissioned and abandoned, and by 1951, the Little Red Lighthouse was slated for demolition – its cast-iron shell to be sold for scrap.

Hearing this news, thousands of children who had loved Swift’s book started a nationwide campaign to save the Little Red Lighthouse. Thanks in part to their efforts, ownership of the Lighthouse was transferred from the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation.

Today, visitors climb a long, iron stair to the top of the tower, where the lantern room is again fitted with a working lens that blinks proudly at cargo barges and passenger ships sailing under the George Washington Bridge.

The Little Red Lighthouse is owned by the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation and is a member of the Historic House Trust.

Little Red Lighthouse
Fort Washington Park, 178th Street and the Hudson River, Manhattan

For a schedule of tours, call 311 and ask for the Urban Park Rangers.

Subway: A train to 181st St. and walk west to Plaza Lafayette.
Cross the footbridge and take a left down the path under the overpass.
Cross over the railroad tracks and follow the path to the left (south).
The lighthouse is almost directly under the George Washington Bridge.

Open house programs held once a month, June through October. Please call the Urban Park Rangers for more information:
(212) 628-2345.

This Museum is not available to rent




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