Frequently Asked Questions

The Overfalls duty station was not located very near the Overfalls Shoals, which is located about mid-way between Cape May, NJ and Cape Henlopen, DE in the Delaware Bay channel. Rather the duty station is much closer to the Delaware side of the channel. See the map below.


Officially, the Overfalls Duty Station was established in in 1898 and discontinued in 1960 thus being maintained for 62 years. The duty station marked the junction of traffic lanes leading north and south from the Delaware bay entrance. When the last lightship serving Overfalls was retired in 1962, she was replaced with a channel marker buoy,

Channel marker buoy which replaced lightship on the Overfalls duty station.

Over the 62 years the station was active, four different lightships were assigned:

  • 1898 - 1901  LV 46

  • 1901 - 1925  LV 69

  • 1926 - 1951  LV 101/WAL 524

  • 1951 - 1960  WLV 605

The most recent lightship to serve on the Overfalls duty station, WLV 605, is currently designated Relief, the last duty station on which she served. Relief is located at the Jack London Square, Oakland, California and maintain by the United States Lighthouse Society as a tourist attraction .Click to read more about the Relief.

The second most recent to serve on Overfalls, LV 101/WAL 524, is currently docked in Portsmouth, Virginia. After leaving the Overfalls station, she served on Stonehorse Shoal until being taken out of service in 1963.  She then came to Portsmouth as a museum and was painted Portsmouth in honor of her new home. She too is a tourist attraction located at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard Museum. Click to read more about the Portsmouth