Lambert Point Light

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Lambert Point Light
Lambert point light.PNG
Undated photograph of Lambert Point Light (USCG)
LocationElizabeth River southeast of Norfolk, Virginia
Coordinates36°52′30″N 76°19′52″W / 36.875°N 76.331°W / 36.875; -76.331Coordinates: 36°52′30″N 76°19′52″W / 36.875°N 76.331°W / 36.875; -76.331 (approx.)
Shapesquare house
First lit1872
Lensfifth-order Fresnel lens

The Lambert Point Light was a small screwpile lighthouse at Lambert's Point in Norfolk, Virginia; it was built in 1872.

The lighthouse was meant to serve the increased shipping traffic on the Elizabeth River, and initially was designed with six piles. The plans were changed when five surplus piles were found; in the end the structure was square, and sat on these five piles. The building was painted brown, and showed a red light from a fifth-order Fresnel lens.

Within a few months the lighthouse had settled more than a foot on one side. The reason was never discovered, but it was believed that the missing sixth pile might have contributed to the problem. Eventually the structure sat at a tilt, with the west side about fourteen inches lower than the east. To stabilize the building, more piles were added to the foundation; at this time a dock and pier were added to the station.

The lighthouse gradually became useless due to construction at the point, and eventually it was surrounded by piers and warehouses built by the Norfolk and Western Railroad. It was eventually suggested that a new lighthouse be built at Bush's Bluff, some miles upriver, and that this might supersede the light at Lamberts Point. This project failed, however, because a new lighthouse was deemed too expensive. The Lamberts Point Light was finally extinguished on December 31, 1892, the same year that Bush's Bluff was marked with a lightvessel. The fog signal at the station was reestablished in 1901, and served for the next ten years. The building eventually collapsed sometime around 1911, and no trace of it remains.


  • History of the light
  • Robert de Gast. Lighthouses of the Chesapeake. Baltimore; The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1973.