Location: Cutler, ME (View Map)
Coordinates: 44° 39′ 03″N 67° 11′ 32″W
Once listed by Maine Preservation as one of Maine’s Ten Most Endangered Historic Properties, Little River Lighthouse, which is on the National Register of Historic Places, has been undergoing restoration since 2001. The lighthouse was re-lighted in 2001 after it had been dark for 26 years. It is cared for by the Friends of Little River Lighthouse, a chapter of the American Lighthouse Foundation.
Quick Lighthouse Facts:
- Year Built: 1876
- Height of Tower: 41 feet
- Description: White cast-iron, conical tower showing a flashing white light every 6 seconds from a focal plane of 56-feet above sea level that is visible 16 nautical miles. The light station is equipped with a fog horn that sounds one blast every 10 seconds. The fog horn operates continuously. – Reference: 2014 U.S. Coast Guard Light List
- Location: At the mouth of Little River. – Reference: 1939 U.S. Lighthouse Service Light List
- Automated: 1975
- Status: Active aid to navigation maintained by the U.S. Coast Guard. The light station is owned by the American Lighthouse Foundation through the National Historic Lighthouse Preservation Act
The first lighthouse established at Little River was built in 1847. The need for a lighthouse was brought about by the increase of trade, shipbuilding and the fishing industry in Cutler Harbor – the last protected harbor on the Maine coast before Canada. The light’s ineffective lamps and reflectors were replaced by a fifth order Fresnel lens in 1855.
The lighthouse was replaced by a new beacon in 1876, which continues to serve today as an active aid to navigation. Little River was a three-man station until 1973 when the Coast Guard changed the station’s personnel to a one-person station. The lighthouse was automated two years later. By 1980, the Coast Guard decided to remove the tower’s Fresnel lens and move the light to a skeleton tower out in front of the historic station. The light station was licensed to the American Lighthouse Foundation in 2000, and one year later – thanks to the dedicated efforts of the organization, the light was placed back in the restored tower and a relighting ceremony took place on October 2, 2001. Ownership of the historic light station was transferred from the U.S. Coast Guard to the American Lighthouse Foundation on July 27, 2002 under the National Historic Lighthouse Preservation Act.
The lighthouse and keeper’s house have been restored and are now being preserved under a maintenance schedule. The station also includes an oil house and boat house.
Offshore – Open House Tours & Overnight Stay Programs
Overnight Stay Program: ALF and it’s local chapter, Friends of Little River Lighthouse, invites you to visit this breathtaking site, refreshingly located off the beaten path, where you can experience tranquility at its best on a Downeast island during your overnight stay. Learn More…
Open House Tours: Located on a 15-acre island in Cutler, Maine, Little River Lighthouse is the quintessential Maine island lighthouse experience.
The Friends of Little River Lighthouse, a chapter of the American Lighthouse Foundation, offers special Open Houses during the summer season, so that the general public can have the opportunity to visit and enjoy the island light station. Boat transportation to the island from Cutler Harbor is provided. Learn More…
Local ALF Chapter Information:
Friends of Little River Lighthouse
P.O. Box 565
Rockland, ME 04841