Friday, March 16, 2012

Schooner Ida Lawrence ~ 5 December 1902

Annual Report of the Operations of the United States Life-Saving Service for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1903:

Steering gear disables and vessel came to anchor off Ocracoke lighthouse and hoisted signal of distress. A surfman from Hatteras Inlet discovered her and carried the news back to the station, when the crew put surfboat on the wagon and started alongshore, arriving abreast of the vessel at 4 p.m., after a hard journey of about 14 miles. Finding that she had hauled down her signal and was lying quietly at anchor, they unharnessed their horses, which were tired out, and remained in the vicinity all night. Meantime the wind came out in a strong SW gale, with rough sea, and, upon repairing to the beach early in the morning, the surfmen found the schooner dragging to the northward and eastward along the shore. They followed her for 5 miles, when the surfman who had been left in charge of the station met them with the tidings that a disaster had occurred off Hatteras Inlet, and, as the Lawrence had brought up on her anchors, they returned to the station to investigate the report. About 9 a.m. the master and crew of the Lawrence, eight men, became alarmed, abandoned their vessel in a boat, and, being unable to land, were driven by wind and sea towards Cape Hatteras. They were sighted by the crews of Durants and Creeds Hill stations, who followed them along the beach, and by the Cape Hatteras crew, who signaled them to land in Hatteras Bight. When the boat struck the breakers, she filled, but the surfmen from the three stations rushed in and rescued the crew and hauled their boat up on the beach. They were supplied with clothing from the stores of the Women’s National Relief Association, and succored at Cape Hatteras station until next morning, when the surfmen transported them to Durants, and the crew of that station carried them across the inlet. They boarded their vessel, but found her leaking, and therefore beached her. They were succored at Hatteras Inlet Station until the 10th instant. The vessel became a complete wreck, and was, with her appurtenances, sold at auction.


“This is to certify that the crew of the schooner Ida Lawrence landed in the breakers on December 5, 1902 and were met and pulled out by the crews of Cape Hatteras, Creeds Hill, and Durants stations, who did all in their power for our comfort. James CAMPBELL, Master, G.G. Kerwin, First Officer, J.B. Wilkinson, Steward.”

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