Paul Gacek's World


North Carolina Wreck Diving



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Chicamacomico Life Saving Station

Rodanthe, NC


Chicamacomico Life Saving Station

In the village of Rodanthe on the barrier island of Hatteras is the Chicamacomico Life Saving Station - the first of North Carolina's twenty-nine United States Life Saving Stations. Originally erected in 1874, shoreline erosion required moving the building several times to its present location adjacent to the larger watch tower structure which was completed in 1911.

Click on any image for a larger view

Welcome to the Chicamacomico Life Saving Station.

Welcome to the Chicamacomico Life Saving Station.


The station keeper explains the workings of the mortar cart.

The station keeper explains the workings of the mortar cart.



A surfman explains the use of the shotline.

A surfman explains the use of the shotline.


The demonstration concludes and the drill begins.
The demonstration concludes and the drill begins.


The surfmen hauling the hawser line to the wreck.
The surfmen hauling the hawser line to the wreck.


Closeup of the mortar cart after the drill.
Closeup of the mortar cart at the conclusion of the drill.


A life car used to transport persons from the wreck.
A life car used to transport persons from the wreck.
The large dormered building with watch tower dates from 1911.
The large dormered building with watch tower dates from 1911.


A surfman explains the use of the hauling lines.

A surfman explains the use of the hauling lines.

Another surfman demonstrates the sand anchor.

Another surfman demonstrates the sand anchor.

The mortar cart is hauled by the surfmen to the waters edge.
The mortar cart is hauled by the surfmen to the waters edge.


A transfer from the wreck using the breeches buoy.
A transfer from the wreck using the breeches buoy.


Entering the 1874 Life Saving Station.

Entering the 1874 Life Saving Station.

Artifacts from many local shipwrecks on display.
Artifacts from many local shipwrecks on display.


The original building from 1874.

The original building from 1874.

The complement of surfmen line up for the demonstration.

The complement of surfmen line up for the demonstration.


The breeches buoy and wooden crotch.

The breeches buoy and wooden crotch.


A final review of each man's assignment before the drill.
A final review of each man's assignment before the drill.


Closeup of the Lyle gun used to shoot a line to the wreck.
Closeup of the Lyle gun used to shoot a line to the wreck.


The 1911 life boat used in the famous Mirlo Rescue.
The 1911 life boat used in the Mirlo Rescue rests in the station.


A plaque commemorates the famous Mirlo rescue of 1918.
A plaque commemorates the famous Mirlo rescue of 1918.



For more information on the Chicamacomico Lifesaving Station, click below:

National Park Service - Chicamacomico Lifesaving Station

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Last modified on Friday, July 14, 2000 18:15:58