An end effector for a surgical cutting and stapling instrument. In various embodiments, the end effector may include an elongate channel that is configured to support a staple cartridge therein and which is also operably coupled to a surgical cutting and stapling instrument. An anvil may be movably supported relative to the elongate channel for selective movement between an open position and a closed position wherein tissue is clamped between the anvil and a staple cartridge supported within the elongate channel in response to a closing motion applied thereto from the surgical cutting and stapling instrument. At least one light source may be provided on at least one of the staple cartridge and the elongate channel. The light sources may interface with the anvil to provide a visual indication viewable through a portion of the anvil to indicate a position of tissue clamped between the anvil and the staple cartridge.