Chicamacomico Lifesaving Station and Museum

Real-Life Heroism on Display

One of the great things about a trip to the Outer Banks is the endless number of attractions waiting for you along these majestic shores. You probably already know about some of the more popular destinations. Others, however, are like buried treasures, lesser-known but more than worthy of discovery.

A prime example of what we mean is Chicamacomico Lifesaving Station and Museum. This fascinating landmark is located off Highway 12 on Hatteras Island just outside the charming village of Rodanthe. The 10-acre site is well worth visiting, both for its natural beauty and its rich heritage. Parking is ample and fees are minimal.

Outer Banks Attractions

Courage under Fire

The United States, along with Great Britain, was at war in 1918 with Germany and its allies. Enemy submarines known as U-boats prowled the East Coast of our nation sinking civilian merchant ships. One vessel that fell victim to these raids was the British craft Mirlo, which transported goods from New Orleans and New York ports back to England. The ship was just off the Outer Banks shoreline when a German U-boat fired a torpedo at its hull. The helpless ship exploded, caught fire, and split in two. The sailors that survived the attack were plunged into the cold Atlantic waters.

Luckily, Coast Guard serviceman at the Chicamacomico lifesaving station were close by. Led by Captain John Allen, they succeeded in saving 42 members of the Mirlo’s crew by navigating their rescue craft between smoking heaps of burning wreckage. The six courageous guardsmen who participated in the daring mission received medals for valor from both the king of England and American leaders.

The Coast Guard closed the lifesaving station in 1954 and converted the site into a museum. You’re welcome to visit the grounds during your Outer Banks trip and see the original structures and equipment for yourself. These meticulously preserved artifacts offer an authentic taste of military maritime history. Staff members are on hand to answer your questions, point out fascinating aspects of local history, and show you and your party an informational video about the station. The museum grounds also include 10 acres of majestic shoreline for your enjoyment.

Why Not Tie the Knot While You’re Here?

The station is a popular spot for engaged couples to exchange wedding vows. You can get more information on this topic at the official website. Whether you’re a history buff, a future bride or groom, or simply someone who admires gallantry, you’ll find much to explore and enjoy at Chicamacomico lifesaving station. Be sure to visit it during your Outer Banks adventure.

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Cola Vaughan Realty
PO Box 1375 • Nags Head, NC 27959
Phone: 252.573.2811
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