When it was built in 1915, it replaced the earlier 1867 lighthouse. The National Historic Lighthouse Preservation Act provides for the Coast Guard to declare some lighthouses surplus, and for their ownership to be transferred to historical, non-profit or local government entities following an application process and review. Nine lighthouses were identified in the fall of 2001 as part of a pilot program to transfer such lighthouses. Rondout Light was one of those nine. Rondout Light was transferred from the Coast Guard to the City of Kingston in 2002. It is currently managed by the non-profit Hudson River Maritime Museum.
It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1979.