Nansemond River Light

Sept. 17, 2019

Nansemond River Light, at the confluence of the Nansemond and James Rivers in Virginia

Screwpile style lighthouse built in 1878.


Name of Lighthouse: Nansemont River Light
Location: Located near Pig Point on east side of entrance to Nansemont River
Date Built: 1878
Type of Structure: Hexagonal cottage style screwpile lighthouse
Operational: No
Deactivated: 1935
Height: 36’
Foghorn: Yes
Builder: Lazaretto Lighthouse Depot
Construction Material: wooden
Tower Shape: Hexagonal
Relationship to Other Structure: Integral
Original Lens: Sixth order Fresnel lens
Characteristics: Fixed red
Range: 6 or 7 nautical miles
Status: destroyed

Historical information:

  • The screwpile lighthouse was assembled at the Lazaretto Lighthouse Depot up in Baltimore. Some parts of the light were recycled from the Roanoke Marshes Lighthouse.
  • In 1899 the light was upgraded to a fifth order Fresnel.
  • The screwpile was dismantled in 1935 and a steel skeletal tower with an automated light was affixed to the platform.

The above was researched and drafted by Anne Puppa, a Chesapeake Chapter of the U.S. Light House Society volunteer.