Lightship LV-87, also known as Ambrose, was built in 1907 as a "floating lighthouse" to guide ships safely from the Atlantic Ocean into the broad mouth of lower New York Bay between Coney Island, New York and Sandy Hook, New Jersey—an area filled with sand bars and shoals perilous to approaching vessels. South Street's Ambrose lightship occupied her original station from her launching in 1908 until 1932. In 1921 Ambrose was fitted with a radio beacon, greatly assisting navigation of the channel in poor visibility; she was the first lightship so equipped. She was given to South Street Seaport Museum by the U.S. Coast Guard in 1968. During the spring and summer, visitors can board Ambrose and tour this original lightship, complete with working "radio shack."
Ambrose is currently closed to the general public. Please check back in Spring 2014 for opening dates and hours.