The Warrior Rock Lighthouse is near the north end of Sauvie Island, which has the Columbia River on the east side and the Multnomah channel on the west side. The northern most point of the island is called Warrior Point. About a kilometer south of Warrior Point sits Warrior Rock, at a slightly treacherous and rocky part of the Columbia River.
Various histories of the area have said:
Surrounded by twenty-three canoes of war clad Chinooks [the Multnomah Tribe], Lt. William Broughton quickly made peace and called the place "Warrior Rock."
Warrior Rock Lighthouse, built in 1889, was originally a small two-story structure atop a sandstone foundation. The single room first floor served as the keeper's quarters. The second floor was primarily a covered half deck housing the lens lantern and fog bell. Eventually, a house and barn were added to the property.
Cast in Philadelphia in 1855, the bell was first used at Cape Disappointment at the mouth of the Columbia River. The winds, land contour, and roaring seas made it difficult to hear the bell, so the bell was replaced and moved to the West Point Lighthouse in Puget Sound before eventually ending up at Warrior Rock in 1889.
When the river was high, the sandstone foundation would often be under water. At those times, Mr. DeRoy rode an aerial tram he concocted with a cable to get from the lightkeeper's house to the lighthouse.
In the 1930s, the lighthouse was replaced with a 28-foot concrete tower, built on the same square sandstone foundation. There it remained until May 27, 1969, when a barge ran into the lighthouse causing considerable damage to the foundation and disabling the light and fog bell.
While the Coast Guard rebuilt the tower, the historic bell was removed. During the move, the bell fell into the river and was severely cracked. It can now be seen on the north side of the Columbia County Historic Courthouse in St. Helens, Oregon.