Friday, April 20, 2012

Schooner Emma C. Rommel ~ 8 January 1884

Annual Report of the Operations of the United States Life-Saving for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1884:

At half past 5 in the evening the patrol of the Gull Shoal Station (6th District), North Carolina, discovered the schooner Emma C. Rommel, of Camden, NJ, from Fernandina, FL, with a cargo of lumber and having a crew of 7 persons and two lady passengers, just as the vessel struck the bar about a mile and a half south of the station. The weather was thick and rainy, with a strong southeast gale, accompanied by a heavy sea. The patrol signaled to the people on board by burning his Coston light, and then hurried to the station for assistance. The beach apparatus was instantly started for the scene of the disaster, but before going far the men found it was impossible to drag it against the gale and were compelled to procure the aid of a pair of horses. They arrived at 7 o'clock opposite the vessel, and at 7.25 the Lyle gun was fired sending a line on board. The whip line and hawser soon followed and then the breeches buoy was sent out, and before midnight the entire party was landed and taken to the station; the ladies being sent thither in a wagon as soon as they reached the beach, and made as comfortable as possible. They were all taken care of until such time as they could proceed to their homes, the captain remaining there 30 days, or until what was saved from the wreck was finally disposed of. The vessel broke up in so short a time that the station crew were unable to save all their gear, and were compelled to cut the hawser to save as much as possible of it. In recognition of their services the captain wrote the following note to the life saving crew:

We, the captain, crew, and passengers, desire to express our sincere thanks to the keeper and crew of the station for their great promptness in rescuing us, and their unvarying kindness to us after we reached the station. Their promptness and efficiency are worthy of all commendation and deserves favorable recognition by the Department. WM. H. SLOAN, Master Schooner E.C. Rommel

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