Near Berlin in Worcester County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
The U.S. Life-Saving Service built the North Beach Station here in 1884. Later, the U.S. Coast Guard took over operations. Decommissioned in 1952, the station house was destroyed by fire in 1962.
Surf Boat Rescues
The crew of the North Beach Station rowed out to rescue shipwreck survivors in 24-foot long wooden boats. The keep directed and stteered while six surfmen manned the oars. Launching and landing through the roaring breakers required courage and skill.
The building behind you was once the auxiliary boathouse of the Pope Island Life-Saving Station which stood 13 miles south of here.
When seas were too rough for launching surf boats, rescuers shot lightweight lines out to ships with guns or rockets. Crewman on the ships could use the lines to pull out heavier ropes called "hawsers." A hawser firmly attached between ship and shore served as an aerial track for rescue devices suspended from pulleys. A breeches-buoy carried one person; a surf car could carry five.
Location. 38° Click for map. Marker is on the northeast corner of the intersection. Located in Assateague Island National Seashore. Marker is in this post office area: Berlin MD 21811, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 4 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Shipwrecks (within shouting distance of this marker but has been reported missing); Native Americans (within shouting distance of this marker); Olde Sinepuxent (approx. 0.4 miles away); Baltimore Boulevard (approx. 0.7 miles away); Swindler Park (approx. 2.9 miles away); "Genesar" (approx. 3 miles away); Rackliffe Plantation Milk House (approx. 3.3 miles away); Stephen Tyng Mather (approx. 3.4 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Berlin.
More about this marker. On the lower left is a photograph of the North Beach Life-Saving Station as it looked from the point in the 1920's. A drawing on the left half of the marker depict the station as it looked in operation. Other drawing show a Lyle gun with a maximum effective range of 400 yards (used to throw the lifeline), and a Breechers-Buoy, a Surf Car. Below these is an illustration showing the rescue equipment
Also see . . . Assateague Island National Seashore. National Park Service site. (Submitted on June 15, 2008, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.)
Categories. • Government • Waterways & Vessels •
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by F. Robby of Baltimore, Maryland. This page has been viewed 1,199 times since then and 19 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on , by F. Robby of Baltimore, Maryland. 4. submitted on , by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.