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Hudson‐Athens Lighthouse

Historic Site

Photo of Hudson-Athens lighthouse

The Hudson-Athens Lighthouse is a Second Empire architectural style lighthouse located in the Hudson River between Hudson and Athens, New York. It was built in 1874 and is one of only two lighthouses in the middle of the Hudson River. The lighthouse sits on wooden pilings that were planted 40 feet deep into the river's bedrock. This structure is an architectural and engineering marvel which to this day has withstood the raging waters and harsh winters.

The station's beacon was originally lighted by Henry D. Best, the station's first lightkeeper, on November 14, 1874. It was upgraded to a fifth-order Fresnel lens in 1926, and the station was fully automated on November 10, 1949. In 1967, the Hudson River Valley Commission, led by Nelson A. Rockefeller, suggested that certain lighthouses owned by the United States Coast Guard be turned over to not-for-profit historical groups to ensure their preservation and upkeep. Hudson-Athens was the first station to be tried through such a program, and on February 15, 1984, a 20-year lease was signed between the Coast Guard and the Hudson-Athens Lighthouse Preservation Society (HALPS). In 2000, title to the station was turned over permanently to HALPS. Today, the Preservation Society conducts occasional tours of the station, which is being restored to its condition as it would have been in the 1930s.

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Contact Information
Hudson-Athens Lighthouse Preservation Society
2 First Street
Athens, NY 12015