Sheffield Island Lighthouse and Nature Trail
Activated in 1868, the Sheffield Island Lighthouse - now listed on the
National Register of Historic Places - was in service for 34 years until its
retirement in 1902. Today the Norwalk Seaport Association’s volunteers maintain
the lighthouse and grounds as a museum and nature preserve.
Visitors can board the Seaport ferry at the Association’s dock, between the
Maritime Aquarium’s IMAX Theater and the Norwalk River Bridge, for their trip to
the island, the lighthouse or harbor cruises.
Each year the ferry takes thousands of visitors back to a time when this and
other lighthouses were critical to coastal and oceangoing shipping.
Once on the island, visitors are treated to a tour of the lighthouse, including
a chance to climb up into the light tower itself, where on clear days, the New
York City skyline can be seen.
The ten room lighthouse showcases period furniture, and offers a chance to see
what life was like for the families of 19th century light keepers.
Another island attraction is the Nature Trail completed by the Seaport
Association in cooperation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. From a
viewing platform, a variety of wildlife including nesting herons and other birds
can be observed.