Amagansett Lifesaving Station Gets A Historic Lifeboat

10.16 Bishop Amagansett Life Boat Transfer
Congressman Tim Bishop joined representatives from the United States Merchant Marine Academy (USMMA) and the Committee to Restore and Preserve the Amagansett U.S. Life Saving and Coast Guard Station.

The Amaganset U.S. Livesaving and Coast Guard Station has received a lifeboat, of the type historically used in Amagansett, from the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy.

The committee working to preserve the lifesaving station approached Congressman Tim Bishop earlier this year when members learned that a life boat similar to boats that were historically used at the Amagansett Station was no longer being used by the Academy, which is in Great Neck.

“Finding a new home for the lifeboat at the Amagansett U.S. Life Saving and Coast Guard Station is important in order to help preserve the legacy of those who served at that station,” said Mr. Bishop. “It will also assist those visiting the station to gain a more thorough understanding of the station’s history and better appreciate its role on the East End.”

The lifesving station, which was originally built on Atlantic Avenue in 1902, was one of a network of 30 lifesaving stations on the south shore of Long Island. The building was returned to its original location several years ago and is currently being restored. When the builing is restored, the life boat will be the focal point of the station’s boat room.

The station was the third lifesaving station built in Amagansett, and it was built to a standard plan known as a Quonochontaug-type station, which was first built at Quonochontaug on Rhode Island’s barrier beach. The 1902 Amagansett Station was operated by the U.S. Life-Saving Service until 1915 and then by the Coast Guard until 1946.

It was moved to 200 Bluff Road in 1966 where it became a private residence, after which it was donated to East Hampton Town by the Carmichael family and moved back to its original location on Atlantic Avenue.

The crew at the lifesaving station was comprised of local fishermen and shore whalers, who would launch their surfboat or fire a line to ship in distress, taking people off with a breeches buoy.

The Life-Saving Service and the Lighthouse Service were the two federal programs intended to increase the safety of coastal navigation, and were later joined to form the U. S. Coast Guard.

Beth Young

Beth Young has been covering the East End since the 1990s. In her spare time, she runs around the block, tinkers with bicycles, tries not to drown in the Peconic Bay and hopes to grow the perfect tomato. You can send her a message at editor@eastendbeacon.com

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