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Motor Lifeboats

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Monomoy Life-Saving Surfboats

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Early Version Monomoy in Action

Early Version Monomoy in Action

History

In the mid to late 1800s the United States Life-Saving Service (USLSS) employed what became to be known as the Monomoy life-saving surfboats. In 1915 the USLSS and the United States Lighthouse Service (USLS) merged to form the United States Coast Guard. Prior to 1900 the dimensions of the Monomoy life-saving surfboats were 26 feet in length with a maximum beam of 7 feet, approximately 2.5 feet depth amidships and weighed about 2100 pounds. There were eight rowers that sat in four pairs side-by-side on fixed thwarts (benches) with a coxswain at the stern. The design was initiated and developed from shore-based whaleboats used off the coast of Cape Cod and Monomoy Island, MA...Hence the name Monomoy!

  • USLSS Station #39, Cape May Point circa 1849
  • USCG station #123, Atlantic City and built 1849
  • USCG station #125, Long Port and built in 1849, location where our Motor Lifeboat CG-36538 was in service
  • USCG station #130, Townsends Inlet in Sea Isle City and built in 1849
  • USCG station #133, Hereford Inlet in North Wildwood and built in 1849
  • USCG station #137, Cape May circa 1849
  • USCG station #136, Cold Spring Station in Cape May circa 1868, currently the Kiwanis meeting house
  • USCG station #127, Peck Beach in Ocean City and built 1870
  • USCG station #124, Absecon Inlet in Absecon and built in 1872
  • USCG station #129, Sea Isle City and built in 1872
  • USCG stations #132, Stone Harbor and built in 1872
  • USCG station #134, Holly Beach in Wildwood and built in 1872
  • USCG station #135, Cape May [four miles northeast] and built in 1872
  • USCG station #126, Great Harbor Inlet and built in 1878
  • USCG station #131, Avalon and built in 1894

In 2012 Kevin and Sandy Maloney of Cape May, NJ purchased five Monomoy life-saving surfboats from the United States Merchant Maritime Academy in Kings Point, NY which were then donated to the following organizations:

Additional history of the Monomoy life-saving surfboats can be found on the U. S. Life-Saving Service Heritage Association’s website: https://uslife-savingservice.org/lifesavers-duties-equipment/pulling-surfboats/

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