The permanent exhibit at the Hull Lifesaving Museum narrates the many miraculous rescues by Joshua James' crews of sailors wrecked on the shallow shores of Nantasket bay at the entrance to Boston Harbor during the latter part of the 19th century. Highlights are the original rescue surfboat "Nantasket", and Breeches Buoy apparatus (a modern version would be today's zip lines), deployed to haul sailors to land from ships wrecked within reach of shore. The rescues and rescue teams are powerfully documented through a rich collection of original contemporary photographs. The Museum collection includes over 5,000 artifacts including a 1903 Fresnel lens, shipwreck fragments, aids to navigation and historical charts.
An active calendar of lectures and visiting exhibits covers a broad range of topics related to the marine heritage of the New England coast.