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Chicamacomico Life-Saving Station Historic Site & Museum
Ranked #1 of 6 things to do in Rodanthe
Certificate of Excellence
Danville, Illinois, United States
Level 3 Contributor
20 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Very imformative”
Reviewed July 19, 2012

If you like history, you'll enjoy this walk back in time. Staff was very friendly. Some buildings not open due to hurricane damage, but they are working on them.

Visited July 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank CarolDiane1962
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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337 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Lorton, Virginia
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Saw more on Website for Free”
Reviewed July 11, 2012

I was intrigued after reading a few books describing this lifesaving station and wanted to learn more while visiting Hatteras Island. The site itself looked interesting from the parking lot, but the guy running the place was far less impressive. Unfortunately, I arrived 25 minutes before the 5:00 p.m. closing time and was told it would be "unfair" to sell a ticket since touring the site normally takes an hour. I was encouraged to visit the gift shop instead, which I did, figuring I would return for a tour the next day. Upon exiting the gift shop I peered toward the ocean from the end of the porch and was quickly reprimanded for looking at something without having purchased a ticket. Looking toward the Ocean? "You pay to look at a movie, don't you?", was what I was told. I cannot assign stars to the tour experience since I didn't get to see anything in person, but I give only 1 star for the rudeness of the guide. I will not return.

Visited July 2012
Helpful?
3 Thank chopchop_12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CaptJames, Site Operations Mgr. at Chicamacomico Life-Saving Station Historic Site & Museum, responded to this review, July 30, 2012
Thank you for taking time to express your views and perspective. Your comment on your experience here is important to us. It was unfortunate that your arrival at 4:35pm did not allow you ample time to tour the entire 7-acre, 8 building complex. It is true that the site stops selling tickets for self-guided tours 30 minutes before closing time, as 30 minutes is not nearly enough time to see it all. While certain areas of the site beyond the Ticket Booth/Museum Gift Shop are only open to ticket holders, some people do walk beyond the designated "Ticket Required Beyond This Point" signs to view the ocean or rest of the site. It's a delicate balance that we try to keep, and it is truly one that we are working on to find a better method of regulating. As a non-profit site and organization, it is important that each of our visitors leave with a better understanding of this complex and its historical significance to our nation. While nothing can take back the unfortunate exchange you had with the guide, it is our hope that you will come back one day, allowing enough time to experience the entire site and the wonderful people and volunteers that work hard to keep the history of "America's Rescue Heroes" alive. Thank you for browsing through the Museum Gift Shop! As a non-profit site that must raise all its own funding through ticket sales, gift shop purchases, donations, memberships, or special events (this site is not state or Federally funded) we understand the importance of customer satisfaction on many levels.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
South Carolina
Level 6 Contributor
123 reviews
35 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 82 helpful votes
“Worth the stop”
Reviewed July 7, 2012

This was just a quick stop and self guided tour for us. Cost $6 to get in but it was cool to learn about the brave folks who were the forerunners of the US Coast Guard. Seeing the devices they used to get people out of the water and off the ships that ran aground was enlightening. Folks who run the place were nice and they have a little gift shop with some cool things.

Visited June 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank shorttrips60
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SF Bay Area
Level 6 Contributor
106 reviews
26 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
“The beginning of the Coast Guard”
Reviewed May 30, 2012

I was in the area during a recent visit to Waves, NC. Being an ex Coast Guardsman I was curious to see where the foundation of the Coast Guard came from. The US Life-Saving Service.

The old station still has the one of the original buildings on it from 1874 and the newest station 1911. The 1874 station became the boathouse and still houses the motor surfboat that was used in one of the most heroic rescues ever recorded. The rescue of the British tanker Mirlo is legendary. On August 16, 1918, the British tanker Mirlo was sunk by the German submarine U-117. The rescue of 42 of 51 British sailors is considered one of the greatest rescues of WWI and the early Coast Guard. The rescue led by J.A. Midgett brought the lifeboat out 4 times and covered 5 miles one way each trip. This amazing, heroic rescue is told in other papers.

It also has an old Life Car and all the equipment for the Beach Apparutus Rescues to bring people in from sea. In fact, the Beach Apparatus Drill reenactment drill is preformed every Thursday at 2:00pm during Jun, July and Aug. This is the only place in the nation to perform the complete drill on a regular basis, and the only place on the planet where it is performed by teams of active-duty U.S. Coast Guard. I wish I would have been there to see it.

All in all, a pretty interesting place to visit, for sure.

You can read all about the Station here on there website here:
http://www.chicamacomi...

Visited May 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank stewart040
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SF Bay Area
Level 6 Contributor
106 reviews
26 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
“The beginning of the Coast Guard”
Reviewed May 30, 2012

I was in the area during a recent visit to Waves, NC. Being an ex Coast Guardsman I was curious to see where the foundation of the Coast Guard came from. The US Life-Saving Service.

The old station still has the one of the original buildings on it from 1874 and the newest station 1911. The 1874 station became the boathouse and still houses the motor surfboat that was used in one of the most heroic rescues ever recorded. The rescue of the British tanker Mirlo is legendary. On August 16, 1918, the British tanker Mirlo was sunk by the German submarine U-117. The rescue of 42 of 51 British sailors is considered one of the greatest rescues of WWI and the early Coast Guard. The rescue led by J.A. Midgett brought the lifeboat out 4 times and covered 5 miles one way each trip. This amazing, heroic rescue is told in other papers.

It also has an old Life Car and all the equipment for the Beach Apparutus Rescues to bring people in from sea. In fact, the Beach Apparatus Drill reenactment drill is preformed every Thursday at 2:00pm during Jun, July and Aug. This is the only place in the nation to perform the complete drill on a regular basis, and the only place on the planet where it is performed by teams of active-duty U.S. Coast Guard. I wish I would have been there to see it.

All in all, a pretty interesting place to visit, for sure.

You can read all about the Station here on there website here:
http://www.chicamacomi...

Visited May 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank stewart040
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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