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.
Open Water Rowing
With a fleet of 23 boats HLM provides a robust schedule of coastal rowing programs in Boston Harbor and Hull, serving a growing following of adult members and youth groups. Participants row in crews of coxed sixes or fours in traditional boats that are designed for sea conditions. Open Water Rowing is easier to learn than flat-water rowing, to the stability and robustness of coastal rowing craft in contrast to the Olympic-style "crew" boats. The attractions of Boston Harbor and its islands are the reward for those crews who take the time to venture beyond the immediate environs of Hull and Boston Harbors. Open water rowing (aka Coastal Rowing) is a rapidly growing sport around the world and HLM offers a growing calendar of annual races that attract crews from all points in New England.