Rhode Island Picture
Lime Rock (Ida Lewis) Lighthouse -
Newport, RI - 1910
(Scroll Down for Bio and History)
Lime Rock Light
was originally built in 1854 as a stone tower with no keepers house.
The Lighthouse structure was added in 1856. The first lighthouse
keeper was Hosea Lewis, who suffered a stroke in 1857. His 16 year old
Zoradia Lewis took over the
Ida Lewis was the most famous
lighthouse keeper in American history. She is credited with 25 rescues
and with saving numerous lives. Ida performed her first rescue in 1858
and carried out her last rescue in 1904 when she was 65 years old. She
also rowed her younger brothers and sisters to the mainland school
every weekday morning.
By 1869, Ida had become
nationally known and had even been featured in
Harper's Weekly Magazine."
President Ulysses S. Grant was one of the over 9000 visitors to Lime
Rock that year.
Ida Lewis died on October 25,
1911 in her beloved lighthouse. She was 69 years old. Every ship in
Newport harbor tolled the bells for Ida that night and all flags in
the harbor were at half mast.
The United States Congress voted
to change the name of the Lime Rock
Light to the
Ida Lewis Light.
The light was officially closed in 1927 and replaced by an automatic
tower light. Today the old lighthouse building serves as the
Ida Lewis Yacht Club.