The Goat Island Light, often referred to as the Green Light or Newport Harbor Light, was constructed in 1842 and is situated on the northern tip of Goat Island off Newport. Goat Island’s initial lighthouse was built in 1823–1824, but it was later moved to Prudence Island in 1851, where it is still standing as the Prudence Island Light. Because the former light failed to sufficiently warn ships of a reef just a few yards off Goat Island, the current light was built there in 1842 and is connected to Goat Island by a thin dike.
An associated lighthouse keeper’s home was constructed in 1864. The foundation of the keeper’s house was damaged in 1921 when a submarine slammed into the breakwater. The following year, an electric light was installed in the tower. Later, the keeper’s damaged home was demolished. No replacement home was built.
The ground between the northern end of Goat Island and the light was filled in to create a hotel when a private developer bought it in the 1960s. This hotel is currently Gurney’s Newport Resort and Marina. In 1988, the lighthouse was placed on the National Register of Historic Places which means that preservation of the lighthouse is extremely important. The Friends of Newport Harbor Lighthouse are currently responsible for running the light, which was leased by the Coast Guard to the American Lighthouse Foundation in 2000. The lighthouse can be spotted from the Goat Island Bridge and visitors are welcome to walk up to the lighthouse to admire it. The views of the Newport Bridge and the harbor are also fantastic!
- Originally constructed: 1823
- Current tower constructed: 1842
- First lit: 1842 (current tower)
- Construction: Granite blocks
- Tower shape: Octagonal conical
- Height: 36 feet
- Focal height: 36 feet
- Markings: White tower with a black lantern
- Characteristic: Fixed Green
- Range: 11 nautical miles
- Status: Active
- NRHP number: 88000276