Drill

The crew of the Grace Darling practice on dry land. With constant drill and practice, every member of the lifesaving crew became expert with each piece of equipment, able to use it in storms, fog and darkness.

Canadian Heritage Information Network
Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History, the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic

© Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History 2001 All Rights Reserved.


Boat Drill

Boat drill included launching and landing and at least 4 or 5 hours of continuous hard rowing.

Canadian Heritage Information Network
Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History, the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic

© Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History 2001 All Rights Reserved.


breeches buoy drill

Practicing with the breeches buoy on dry land. In a real rescue the rope would be shot out to the wrecked ship with a special gun. The sailors would be hauled ashore one at a time.

Canadian Heritage Information Network
Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History, the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic

© Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History 2001 All Rights Reserved.


In fog or storms lifesaving crews have patrolled the whole coast of the island on horseback. Everyone had to be able to ride. Horse patrol was no picnic. Damp and cold cut through you like a knife.

Wind blew sand in your face. You couldn’t see because the fog was often as thick as soup and it was nearly impossible to hear anything but the roar of the surf.

On clear days the lifesaving crew looked for ships in distress from the lookout tower at each station.
In fog or storms lifesaving crews have patrolled the whole coast of the island on horseback. Everyone had to be able to ride. Horse patrol was no picnic. Damp and cold cut through you like a knife.

Wind blew sand in your face. You couldn’t see because the fog was often as thick as soup and it was nearly impossible to hear anything but the roar of the surf.

On clear days the lifesaving crew looked for ships in distress from the lookout tower at each station.

© Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History 2001 All Rights Reserved.

Pony Patrol

Horse patrol was no picnic. Damp and cold cut through you like a knife.

Canadian Heritage Information Network
Sable Island Preservation Trust, Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History, the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic,

© Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History 2001 All Rights Reserved.


Telescope

In fog or storms lifesaving crews have patrolled the whole coast of the island on horseback.

Canadian Heritage Information Network
Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History, the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic

© Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History 2001 All Rights Reserved.


Learning Objectives

The learner will:
  • Identify how people on Sable Island helped sailors who became shipwrecked on Sable Island
  • Describe how the Sable Islanders prepared to rescue shipwreck survivors
  • Describe how Sable Islanders practised in preparation for a shipwreck disaster

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