Come Visit the Overfallsand we'll give you a tour you won't forget!

The mission of the Overfalls Foundation is to preserve, teach and honor the lightships and their sailors of the United States and the maritime history of our community through the preservation and display of the Lightship Overfalls (LV-118) and its collection of associated maritime artifacts.

Built in 1938 for the U.S. Lighthouse Service, the LV-118 was decommissioned by the U.S. Coast Guard in 1972 and has been in Lewes, Delaware since 1973. LV-118, renamed Overfalls in honor of the Overfalls Shoals lightship station located nearby and the American lightship sailors that served there, is now preserved, maintained and operated by a dedicated team of volunteers.

Come visit our facilities and learn the story of how the ship went from near ruin to becoming a National Historic Landmark worthy of ship tours and public events. You will hear about the roles lightships played in American history and see what life aboard a lightship was like. We’ll introduce you to the Delaware Maritime Hall of Fame, explain what a Monomoy is and show you several life-size aids to navigation.

Don’t forget to visit the Ship Store and American Lightship Museum where you can learn more about the history of lightships and purchase ship related clothing, jewelry, original artwork, books, maps, and other items.

Plan Your Visit

The Ship, Ship Store and Museum are now closed for the off-season.

There will be special openings to the public on Saturday, November 11th for Veteran’s Day and on Saturday, December 2nd for the Annual Lewes Christmas Market. The Ship, Ship Store and Museum will be open from 10am-4pm both days.

Ship Tours

Take a guided tour above and below decks of the refurbished Overfalls. The last daily tour starts at 3:30.

Group Tours and Off Season tours can be arranged by contacting:
Bob Murphy: (302) 644-8050.

Lightship Overfalls Weather Station

The Lightship Overfalls Weather Station provides current local weather information and a live streaming camera feed of the downtown Lewes waterfront.


$5.00 – Adults & Children 15+
FREE – Children 14 and under
FREE – Overfalls Foundation members

The Scuttlebutt

  • Overfalls 2023 Year End Message
    It has been an exciting 85th year for our beloved LV118, Lightship Overfalls and the Overfalls Foundation.  As we begin 2024, it’s nice to take a moment to reflect on what the Foundation has been able to accomplish this year. First and foremost, 2023 marked the 50th year LV118 has been on the Lewes waterfront.  […]

    Read More… from Overfalls 2023 Year End Message

  • Man Overboard Lights
    There are several life rings located on the Overfalls weather deck. These rings were to be tossed to someone who had fallen overboard. Right beside each life ring is something that looks like a large mustard-colored flashlight. These are man overboard rescue lights. They are battery powered and are designed to be tossed, with the […]

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  • So What Kind of Clock Is That?
    Located above the helm on Overfalls, this is a 24 hour Chelsea Clock. The United States military uses 24 hour timekeeping because it make it easier to differentiate between AM and PM. Two thirty in the morning is 0230 hours (usually referred to as “o-two-thirty”). Two thirty in the afternoon is 1430 (or “fourteen-thirty”). This […]

    Read More… from So What Kind of Clock Is That?

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