Chicamacomico Life-Saving Station

The Chicamacomico Life-Saving Station complex dates to 1874, when the first seven U.S. Life-Saving Stations were built in North Carolina. 

Chicamacomico was the first to be completed and manned. The Life-Saving Service was responsible for rendering aid to those in peril from the sea and in 1915 evolved into the U.S. Coast Guard. The site includes the 1874 station, the 1892 cookhouse, the 1911 station with its separate cookhouse, the boathouse, the stable, and the tractor shed. A recent addition is the 1907 Midgett home, now open to the public. This is considered to be the most complete remaining site of a U.S. Life-Saving Station in the country. Numerous displays and artifacts of the Life-Saving Service and the Coast Guard abound.

Staff and docents are available to tell the history of the station and the rescues that are a part of it. The most famous was the 1918 rescue of 42 of the 51 men aboard the British tanker Mirlo, saved from a fire which resulted from an attack by a German U-boat during WWI.  Surfboat No. 1046, used in that rescue, as well as many other artifacts, are on-site.

The 7-acre, 8-building complex is owned and operated by the Chicamacomico Historical Association, a nonprofit organization. The site and museum shop are open Monday through Friday from 10am-5pm, mid-April to November. The site is listed on the National Historic Register. It is also part of the Historic Albemarle Tour and one of the official 30 sites on the Outer Banks Scenic Byway. Brochures are available on-site, listing other historic tour destinations, as well as Passport Stamps for your traveling passport adventures. 

Self-guided tours, special group tours, summer programs, films, and a museum gift shop are available. Admission fees are charged. For more information, visit, call 252-987-1552 or email: