Celebrating 150 Years

Celebrating 150 Years2024-04-03T09:55:07-04:00

Intro of Series

In 1871, The United States Life-Saving Service, which is the predecessor of today’s United States Coast Guard Service, was established to aid victims in traditional shipwreck areas. Earlier means of assistance had failed so the USLSS had the task of restructuring the program to achieve their goal of saving lives. In 1874, the USLSS came [...]

Persistence is Key

On November 25, 1875, high winds and heavy sea caused the boat of four fishermen to capsize near the Caffey’s Inlet station. Captain Malachi Corbell lead a crew of men into the rough water towards the men who were clinging to their overturned boat. Unfortunately, by the time they arrived, two of the men had [...]

Dedicated Devotion

One of the most tragic events during the United States LifeSaving Service time was the wreck of the Italian bark, the Nuova Ottavia. On March 1, 1876, the bark stranded itself near the Jones Hill station in bad weather and initially did not indicate that assistance was needed. However, the next evening the bark was [...]

Unwaivering Courage

In the wee hours of November 24, 1877, the steamer, Huron, stranded itself about two and a half miles from the Nags Head station. Rough seas caused the vessel to keel over so her crew valiantly tried to survive the storm by clinging to her remains. Unfortunately, the Nags Head station wasn’t open for the [...]

A Noble Community

On January 31, 1878, the wooden steamer, Metropolis, ran aground about 4 ½ miles south of the Jones Hill station. She was discovered by locals who happened to catch a glimpse of one of her masts in the fog. One local man hurried to the closest neighbor who lived about ½ a mile away to [...]

What’s in a Name

The history of the life-saving station known today as Oregon Inlet has a unique beginning. In 1846, a great hurricane created an inlet between Bodie Island and Pea Island. An unsuspecting vessel named Oregon was caught in the storm but escaped to the safety of the ocean by using the newly formed inlet. Because of [...]

The Indomitable Spirit

In the early morning hours of October 4, 1881, the schooner, Thomas J. Lancaster, was caught in a heavy squall and ended up grounding about three and a half miles north of the Chicamacomico Life-Saving Station. There were thirteen all told on the vessel that included Captain Hunter’s wife and three children. The crew of [...]

A Patient Soul

On October 5, 1881, the same storm that caused the Thomas J. Lancaster to wreck near the Chicamacomico station, forced a small schooner named the Charles to scud down the coastline. When she neared the Little Kinnakeet station, she appeared to haul in towards land as if the captain of the vessel intended to purposefully [...]

A Resilient Mindset

On October 5, 1881, a second schooner was driven to the shore by the weather near the Little Kinnakeet station. The lifesaving crew had seen her heading to land while they assisted the crew of the Charles so they were already in the vicinity and was able to get to her as quickly as the [...]

Practice Makes Perfect

On February 5, 1882, the schooner Mary L. Vankirk found herself in storm and ended up losing her sails and sprung a leak. Quickly, she became water-logged and unmanageable. The initial plan by the five-man crew was to seek refuge in Hatteras Inlet but with fears rising that she would capsize at any moment, Captain [...]

A Flexible Manner

About 1:00 in the morning of January 9, 1883, the schooner, Thomas J. Martin, stranded about half a mile north of the Caffey’s Inlet station. The station patrolman found her on his return to the station. He lit his Coston light to notify the vessel that help was on the way and took off at [...]

A Moment’s Notice

In the morning of March 3, 1883, a small shad-boat named the Allie capsized due to strong winds about five miles north of the Oregon Inlet Life-Saving Station throwing two men into the rough waters. Nearby, two surfmen had begun their own journey to Manteo for station provisions but had turned back due to the [...]

Aware and Watchful

On September 21, 1883, the crew from the Kitty Hawk Life-Saving Station discovered a schooner about six miles southeast of the station dismasted and flying colors of distress. The surf-boat was launched but due to rough weather, it took about 2 ½ hours for the crew to reach the vessel’s side. Only two sailors were [...]

The Long Game

In the wee hours of October 3, 1883, a patrolman for the Kitty Hawk station discovered the schooner Luola Murchison stranded close to the station. Keeper James R. Hobbs decided to launch the surfboat and about an hour after initial notification, the crew arrived and boarded the vessel. They immediately assisted the Murchison crew in [...]

A Thankful Heart

Near midnight on November 30, 1885, a patrolman from the Caffey’s Inlet station discovered a vessel stranded about a quarter of a mile northeast of the station. The night was so dark and stormy that her lights were barely visible, and the fog made it difficult to discern what type of vessel was in distress. [...]

A Protective Nature

On the morning of February 26, 1888, the south patrolman for the Whales Head Station (originally known as Jones Hill) observed a longboat full of people about a mile past the breakers near the station. After learning of the situation, Keeper Andrew Scarborough instructed the surfboat be launched to go to their assistance. They turned [...]

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