Stepping Stones Light is a Victorian-style lighthouse in Long Island Sound, in Nassau County, New York. The lighthouse is square-shaped and made of red brick, standing one-and-a-half stories high. The Hudson-Athens Lighthouse is a virtual twin of this structure.
The light is in current use, under the management of the United States Coast Guard. It is not open to the public. The reef upon which it sits was given its name by Siwanoy (Minnefords) Native American legends. According to the legend, the tribe used warriors, medicine, and magic to chase the devil out of present-day Westchester County, New York onto City Island (formerly Greater Minneford Island), surrounding him at Belden Point. The devil then picked up huge boulders lying there and tossed them into Long Island Sound, using them as stepping stones to make his escape. The natives named the rocks, “The Devil’s Stepping Stones”.
It was added to the National Register of Historic Places as Stepping Stones Light Station on September 15, 2005. The light station has been declared surplus, and the application for transfer under the National Historic Lighthouse Preservation Act of 2000 is under review. In 2008, the light station was transferred to the Town of North Hempstead.
In 2014, the Town of North Hempstead entered into a partnership with the Great Neck Historical Society and the Great Neck Park District to raise funds to rehabilitate the Lighthouse.
This story is courtesy the Roosevelt Island Historical Society, founded in 1977 to recover, maintain and disseminate the record of Roosevelt Island’s heritage from colonial times to the present. Visit their website at www.rihs.us.
Photo of Stepping Stones Light Station provided.