Spring 2023
Honor the brave and courageous
by preserving a historic treasure
Nantucket/LV-112's crew saved lives, guided domestic and international commerce, and served our nation
Nantucket Lightship/LV-112 anchored on Nantucket Shoals Lightship Station, marking the entrance of the United States/European transoceanic shipping lanes, 100 miles off the U.S. mainland during a peaceful sunset. To learn more about Nantucket/LV-112's restoration, click here. 1973 Photo credit: Paul Sabo, LV-112 USCG crew member.
A tribute to Capt. Robertson P. Dinsmore (USCG Ret), today USLM Director Emeritus
Capt. Dinsmore on board Nantucket/LV-112, standing next to the fog bell.
Captain Robertson (Bob) Dinsmore was the U.S. Lightship Museum’s (USLM) first financial donor and volunteer when the USLM was established in 2009, exclusively for the purpose of rescuing Nantucket Lightship/LV-112 from destruction and initiating the restoration and preservation of this National Historic Landmark. He recently retired from our Board of Directors but will continue to serve as Director Emeritus. Bob’s commitment and generous support to our historic cause has been transformational. His experience, knowledge and wisdom has been extremely valuable in helping us achieve our museum’s goals. To learn more about Capt. Dinsmore’s stellar career serving in the U.S. Navy, USCG and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, click here.
Bob Dinsmore in LV-112’s galley with a model of Nantucket/LV-112 that he donated to the USLM.
From the beginning in Oct. 2009 when we were assessing and preparing LV-112 in Oyster Bay, Long Island, NY, for transport to its homeport of Boston, for five months Bob spent many of his weekends making the 5-hour drive with us to help with the transport preparation efforts..
The late Bill Shephard (left), a local volunteer from the Oyster Bay area, and Bob Dinsmore on board LV-112 in Oyster Bay, December 2009.
During 2009-10, when LV-112 was berthed in Oyster Bay under the new ownership of the USLM, at age 83, Bob was climbing ladders, planks, etc., sometimes in adverse 10-degree winter weather. In May 2010 when LV-112 departed in tow by tugboat from Oyster Bay for the trip back to her original homeport of Boston Harbor, Capt. Dinmore was on board the tug during the 34-hour journey. In summary, the USLM is sincerely grateful to Capt. Dinsmore and his family for their passionate support of our historic cause. Not only was Capt. Dinsmore a generous donor through the years, so was his family. Thank you all for your extraordinary commitment to helping save an important historic maritime treasure. 
During a Boston visit to Nantucket/LV-112, Bill Shephard (shown with Capt. Dinsmore in photo above) at 80 years young, climbed to the top of the foremast to enjoy the view. Bill was extremely passionate about maritime historic preservation, had a love of the sea, and was a U.S. Navy veteran. Bill also was an electronics engineer, inventor, craftsman and shipwright. For more information about Bill's fascinating background, click here.
Bob Dinsmore with his wife Pat and daughter Shirley in LV-112’s pilot house.
Remembering Alberino DiFlumeri, former Nantucket/LV-112 USCG crew member
Alberino (“Al" or "Sonny”) DiFlumeri, a former Nantucket/LV-112 USCG crew member, recently “crossed the bar” (1931-2022). He served in the USCG from 1952-56 and on Nantucket/LV-112 from 1954-56. This photo was taken with Al during the winter of 2021 when his former ship, Nantucket/LV-112, was in dry-dock for its second phase of restoration at the Fitzgerald Shipyard in Chelsea, MA.
Former U.S. Coast Guard veteran and Nantucket Lightship/LV-112 crew member (1954-56), Alberino “Sonny” N. DiFlumeri, age 90, of Saugus, MA, passed away peacefully on November 3, 2022, surrounded by his loving family. Al was born and raised in East Boston, and was the son of the late Vincent and Mary DiFlumeri. He was a retired technician from Polaroid and a member of the Danvers Fish and Game Club. He had been a resident of Saugus since 1968. The DiFlumeri family generously directed tributes to Al to the U.S. Lightship Museum In lieu of flowers. Donations in Alberino’s memory may be made to the USLM for the restoration of Nantucket/LV-112 by clicking the button below.
The USLM is sincerely grateful to the DiFlumeri family for their longtime support of Nantucket Lightship/LV-112’s restoration and preservation. We always enjoyed Al’s periodic visits to LV-112 with his son, Al Jr., and listening to his experiences on board the Nantucket as a USCG crew member, which he shared with us and visitors. Our favorite story was the following, in a 1954 Boston newspaper article tiled "2 ½ Hours of Hell” (scroll down to next story).
While in LV-112’s crew’s quarters during a museum event, Al DiFlumeri and fellow former USCG LV-112 crew member Bob Gubitosi, who has also since “crossed the bar," reminisce about their time and adventures serving on the Nantucket. From 1958-62, Bob was the cook on LV-112, also referred to as WAL-534. Below is a one of Bob's more harrowing experiences.

"It was a calm day and I had no problem climbing the mast. Getting down however, was something else. It took them over an hour and a half to talk me down. The SS United States passed so close that I was waving to the folks on deck. After it passed, the screws caused a wake from the great ship that rocked the little lightship to the point that I thought the mast was going to touch the water. I wrapped my legs and arms around the mast, and it seemed that the ship was going to rock forever. A brief thought went through my head to jump into the water. Thank God, I didn't. I was 19 years old at the time and I never climbed the mast again.” — Bob Gubitosi (1939-2014), LV-112, 1959-62
A horrific tale of terror — "2 ½ Hours of Hell”

When Al DiFlumeri first came on board LV-112 in 2013 during the USLM'’s ownership, it was his first time back to LV-112 since he served on the lightship during 1954-55. He asked me to follow him into the crew’s quarters to show me something. Once we were in the crew’s quarters, he pointed to a section of the starboard bulkhead, connected to the crew’s sleeping quarters, close to the overhead. Still with amazement after 60 years, he told me that when he boarded LV-112 after it was towed back to the Coast Guard–Base Boston after Hurricane Edna, he discovered footprints on the upper bulkhead towards the overhead.
Inside LV-112’s crew’s quarters, volunteer Cindy Baxter points to the location where Al DiFlumeri indicated where he had seen footprints after he boarded LV-112, right after the lightship limped into port for repairs from battling Hurricane Edna. To illustrate this amazing phenomenon to visitors during tours, we placed footprint decals on the bulkhead.
During the height of Hurricane Edna, after LV-112’s anchor chain parted, the endangered lightship was violently listing and not able to properly point its bow into the raging 70-foot.seas. In addition, high seas were breaking over LV-112’s super-structure. Water flooded the smoke stack, extinguishing LV-112’s boilers, which left the stricken lightship without power and no way to control the lightship’s direction. As a result, LV-112 was in danger of capsizing (see illustration). Click here to see the Boston Globe newspaper articles about Hurricane Edna and Nantucket/LV-112
This is a cross-section illustration of Nantucket/LV-112 as a steam-powered vessel, representing how drastic LV-112 was violently listing back and forth during the hurricane—at times, reported at a 65-degree list, caused by being slammed broadside from the monstrous waves. This was all happening while the disabled lightship had no anchor and was without power to help aim it safely into the approaching waves. As a result, the lightship crew was forced to gain their footing on the bulkheads, as indicated in the illustration.
Nantucket/LV-112 anchored on Nantucket Shoals Lightship Station during storm conditions c. 1940. Notice how LV-112’s decks are completely submerged by the crashing waves. The historic lightship was built specifically to withstand these types of hazardous conditions on Nantucket Shoals Station. The unique lightship was stoutly built with a double hull and a high degree of compartmentalization (43 watertight compartments). LV-112’s heavily reinforced state-of-the-art construction (1935-36) is a testament to surviving almost 40 years of taking a tremendous beating, anchored at sea all year long. Lightships and their crew’s had to remain on station regardless of weather and storm conditions. 
Looking forward on Nantucket/LV-112's weather deck, the ship rides the crest of a large wave during hurricane force winds while anchored on station. Click on the red arrow on the photo to view the types of seas that many lightships battled while anchored at sea. Being anchored the farthest out to sea and the most isolated U.S. lightship, Nantucket/LV-112 was subjected to the worst weather and sea conditions imaginable.
Click the red arrow on photo to see an example of the types of rough sea conditions that lightships anchored on station often endured with their crews. Note that the ships in the video are underway and not anchored. Because lightships had to remain anchored in these types of conditions, they faced greater risks of damage to the ship and safety to its crew, especially Nantucket Lightship. Imagine being on board during these conditions while you are trying to rest comfortably in your bed at night.

Nantucket/LV-112 experienced 13 hurricanes during its service as a commissioned lightship. LV-112 also fought the “Great Atlantic Hurricane” of 1944—termed by the U.S. Weather Bureau as one of the largest and most powerful storms to savage the U.S. East Coast and New England, drawing comparisons to the Hurricane of 1938, one of the worst storms in New England's history. The 1944 hurricane claimed five ships and 344 of their crew members' lives at sea. Three U.S. Coast Guard vessels and two Navy ships sank, one of them being Vineyard Sound Lightship/LV-73 and its crew of 12. Vineyard Sound Lightship was stationed off the tip of Cuttyhunk Island in Vineyard Sound (Massachusetts), anchored in approximately 80 feet of water. 
Vineyard Sound Lightship/LV-73 sank during the Great Atlantic Hurricane of 1944, with all 12 crew members lost.
Photo at left: LV-112 crew member Clifton Giles holds badly damaged helm from the flying bridge. Photo at right (left to right): boatswain Richard E. Arnold, engineering officer Eugene Darcy and chief John C. Corea hold the damaged helm in the pilot house. Credit: Boston Herald
Surviving crew members who battled Hurricane Edna on board Nantucket/LV-112 in 1954 were photographed in LV-112's wardroom. Top from left: Haines D. Hewitt, Clifton L. Giles, Rufus Jordan Jr., James E. Sheahan, Jack A. King, Leo A. Oliva. Seated from left: engineering officer Eugene W. Darcy, chief John C. Corea, and boatswain Richard E. Arnold. Credit: Boston Herald
Former 1954 LV-112 USCG crewmen (left to right), the late Richard Arnold (1929-2019) and James Sheahan (1933-2017) meet on LV-112 in 2011 for the first time since serving on board Nantucket/LV-112 in 1954 during Hurricane Edna.
James E. Sheahan 
Nantucket/LV-112 was stationed 100 miles off the U.S. mainland, marking the entrance of the main shipping lanes for European shipping entering the U.S. and anchored in over 200 feet of water—the most remote and treacherous lightship station in the world. She was the last lightship seen by vessels departing the United States, as well as the first beacon seen on approach. Nantucket/LV-112’s well-designed and constructed hull is a testament to its survival during these horrific powerful storms.
U.S. Lightship Sailor’s memorial in New Bedford, MA, reads: “In tribute to the heroes of the U.S. Lightship Service who gave their lives in service to fellow mariners." The fog bell was recovered from the wreckage of Vineyard Sound Lightship/LV-73.
Framingham State College students produce video on Nantucket/LV-112
Framingham State College students (left to right) Tim McCarthy, Cian MacIver and Josh Colburn set up their video camera and sound-recording equipment to create a video documentary about Nantucket Lightship/LV-112 as an assignment for their film-production class. Not shown in photo is Joe Landry, who also was involved with the video assignment.
LV-112 restoration update:
Period items representing American culture and lifestyle will be featured on our floating 'time capsule'
These period artifacts wil be installed on Nantucket L/V-112 upon completion of the onboard living quarters during the 2023 tour season. Baby Boomers—the transitional generation—will most likely remember these items: Life magazine, RCA Victor vacuum tube TV, Kalart-Victor 16mm movie projector, Smith-Corona typewriter, Aqua-Velva aftershave, Brylcreem “A little dab will do ya”, Gillette Techmatic safety razor, etc.
Like most historic sites, Nantucket LV-112 represents more than just a historic structural time period. It represents an evolution of American culture and lifestyle (e.g., music, clothing, personal effects, film, TV, entertainment, communications, furniture, etc.). When visitors come on board LV-112, they go back in time as part of the learning experience.
A visiting student gets to experience a vintage rotary dial phone from 1936 and a manual typewriter in the ship’s office.
The remainder of Nantucket/LV-112's cosmetic interior restoration in the crew’s quarters includes recoating the decks, replacing the deck tiles, and restoring and reinstalling the crew’s berths. As an important USLHS and USCG commissioned navigational aid to sea-going traffic, LV-112’s structure and onboard mechanical components evolved through time as advancements in equipment and methods emerged. Therefore, LV-112 is a living time capsule that depicts 1936-75 from its construction to decommissioning. Our restoration on the Nantucket depicts the 1960-75 time period, primarily focusing on the years 1967-75, involving American culture and lifestyles of that era—when gasoline averaged 36 cents per gallon, a brand-new car cost averaged $3,500, average house price was $23,000, 8-track tapes were popular, rotary dial phones were still in use, disco was popular, personal computers or cell phones were not in use yet, rock stars included Elvis, the Beatles, Led Zeppelin and Jimmy Hendrix, Mohammed Ali was still a world champion boxer, and leisure suits were on the rise.

LV-112 was originally built as a steam-powered vessel. In 1960, LV-112 went through a major refit—steam engines were removed and replaced with all-diesel power, and electronics, signaling/communication systems and light beacons were upgraded, in addition to other structural and mechanical systems upgrades. The most obvious exterior modification was the removal of the tall smokestack, which was replaced with a wider and shorter stack to accommodate the additional auxiliary diesel engines.
LV-112 sailors relax, playing cards in the crews quarters, 1967.
LV-112 crew members in 1967 operate the 16mm movie projector on the lightship's “movie night.” Feature films such as Alfred Hitchcock’s “The Birds” in a 16mm format were shown on board for entertainment while anchored on Nantucket Shoals Lightship Station.
In the crew's berthing quarters, berths have been removed for structural deck restoration and recoating. Deck tiles will be restored/replaced. Berth frames will be recoated, and canvas mattress-supports will be refastened and fitted with new mattresses and berth linens/blankets, etc.
U.S. Navy Seabee and Air Force Veteran’s estate donates to USLM
The estate of Douglas D. MacDonald (1948-2022), a decorated U.S. Navy Seabee and Air Force veteran, generously donated his Dynahoe loader/backhoe to the U.S. Lightship Museum.
The estate of Douglas MacDonald has generously donated an industrial loader-backhoe (Hydro-Dynamic Dynahoe) to the U.S. Lightship Museum (USLM) that will be converted to funds from the sale of the Dynahoe. Douglas was a former military veteran who proudly served our nation in the Navy as a Seabee (U.S. Naval Construction Battalion) and the U.S. Air Force. 

Another resource that helps the USLM raise funds to support the restoration of Nantucket/LV-112, our educational programs and operating expenses, is a vehicle donation program that the USLM offers in conjunction with CARS, LLC. In this program, vehicles, trucks, real estate and other equipment can be effortlessly donated to our 501(c)3 nonprofit organization in turn for a tax deduction. For more information on the program, click here. 
USLM volunteers (left to right) Don Matthews and Mike Erali helped prepare the 7-ton Dynahoe for transport from Douglas MacDonald’s estate property in Orange, MA.
Don Matthews used his front-end loader to assist in moving the Dynahoe onto the flatbed trailer for transport.
At the time for transport, the Dynahoe was not in running condition and required the assistance of Don Matthews with his front-end loader from his excavating business, Don Matthews Excavating, Warwick, MA. Mike Erali is a former U.S. Army veteran and retired welder/heavy-equipment mechanic with the former Boston & Maine railroad (B&M). Note: For all you railroad buffs, the B&M was the owner of the Flying Yankee streamliner passenger train built in 1935—in service until 1957. The Flying Yankee is a unique vintage diesel-electric streamliner passenger train, now undergoing restoration and preservation—from the same period as Nantucket/LV-112. The Flying Yankee was powered by a Winton diesel engine, the same as the Fire Island Lightship/LV-114, also with diesel electric-power, which had four Winton diesels. For more information, click here.
Vintage postcard depicting the Boston and Maine railroad’s Flying Yankee diesel-electric streamliner passenger train arriving at Old Orchard Beach, ME, from Boston, c. 1940. Credit: Digital Commonwealth
Motivating and inspiring youths of today to become historic preservationists of tomorrow
A primary objective of the U.S. Lightship Museum is to inspire and motivate today’s youths to become interested in history and historic preservation. Hopefully, enough students will develop a passion and desire to advance into an educational history-related curriculum, maturing into a historic preservation profession and/or advocation. This perspective will prepare them to take the reins from us older folks to maintain and continue to save our precious historic treasures for everyone to learn from and enjoy long into the future.
Nantucket Lightship/LV-112's
visiting hours for 2023
LV-112 will be open on Saturdays, from 10am – 4pm, for the season from April 29 through October 28, 2023. Tours also can be scheduled by appointment on other days throughout the year for individuals, groups and private functions. For more information, contact us via email or call 617.797.0135. We look forward to seeing you!
Nantucket Lightship/LV-112 berthed on the East Boston waterfront, 2022.
How you can
help Nantucket/LV-112's
light beacon keep shining
All electronic donations will be securely processed by PayPal
Attention lighthouse lovers

If you love lighthouses and want to learn about these guiding lights and navigational aids all over the world, then The Lighthouse Directory is the website for you. It provides an astounding amount of information, linking to more than 17,200 of the world's lighthouses. Russ Rowlett, Adjunct Professor of Mathematics at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, compiled the directory with the assistance of hundreds of lighthouse fans around the world who have enriched this site with their own information and suggestions. For a long time, Rowlett tried to maintain a list of lighthouses from his many friends and contacts, but it had grown too long (and too out-of-date) to display on the comprehensive site. Rowlett offers special thanks to Michel Forand for his suggestions and editing, touching essentially every page of the directory, and Jeremy D'Entremont, Ted Sarah and Klaus Huelse, each contributing in vital ways.
The Maine Lighthouse Museum

Another unique educational resource for U.S. lighthouse history, lifesaving and lightship services is the Maine Lighthouse Museum (MLM), located in Rockland, Maine, the heart of the midcoast. Last October, the U.S. Lightship Museum presented a PowerPoint presentation at the MLM about U.S. lightships and Nantucket/LV-112. The mission of the Maine Lighthouse Museum is to educate the public regarding the longstanding traditions, heroism and progress of America's lighthouse and lifesaving services and the U.S. Coast Guard through the conservation and interpretation of the nation's most significant collection of lighthouse and lifesaving artifacts. From sparkling lighthouse lenses to heartwarming stories of the keepers and their families, the Maine Lighthouse Museum is truly America's lighthouse museum. For more information, log on to the Maine Lighthouse Museum or call 207.594.3301. 
Support LV-112's restoration!
Become a USLM member today
For a gift of $1,000 or more, donors will receive a limited-edition, fine-art print of the SS United States passing Nantucket Lightship/LV-112 by marine artist Gerald Levey.

Discover the value-added membership benefits when you become a member of the U.S. Lightship Museum (USLM). The USLM is a member of the Council of American Maritime Museums (CAMM). All USLM members will be granted reciprocal privileges (free admission) at participating CAMM institutions. For more information about the benefits and the USLM Membership program, click on USLM Membership.
We salute our donors
ACK Marine & General Contracting, LLC

American Express

Amex Industrial Services, Inc.
Association of Public Safety Communications Officials – Atlantic Chapter

BAE Systems
Bluefin Robotics

Boston Forge & Welding Corp. 
Boston Harbor
Shipyard & Marina
The Boston Foundation
ThreeBees Fund

Boston Marine Society
Burnham Associates, Inc.
Burnham Marine

California Public Safety Radio Association 

Cameron International Corporation

Charitable Adult Rides and
Services, Inc.
City of Boston
Community Preservation Act

C/J Towing & Recovery
Claflin & Son
Nautical Antiques

Crandall Dry Dock Engineers

Capt. Robertson P. Dinsmore Fund

Donahue, Tucker &
Ciandella, PLLC 
East Boston Foundation
Eastern Bank Charitable

Eastern Salt Company
Egan Maritime Institute,
Nantucket Shipwreck &
Lifesaving Museum
Fitzgerald Shipyard
Foss Maritime
Friends of the
Boston Harbor Islands
H&H Propeller, Inc.
J. Hewitt Marine
Electrical Services

SR Johnson Fund
Kelly Automotive Group  
H.F. Lenfest Fund
The Lightship Group, LLC
Marine Systems Corporation

Massachusetts Historical Commission

McAllister Towing &
Transportation Co.

Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC)
Joe and Pepette Mongrain

National Park Service
Save America's Treasures

National Trust for   
Historic Preservation
New England 
Lighthouse Lovers 

New London Maritime Society and Custom House Maritime Museum

Patriot Marine, LLC
The Sail Loft, LLC, Nantucket
Industrial Marine Coatings Division

State Street Corporation
T & M Services

Town of Oyster Bay, 
Long Island, NY

U.S. Coast Guard Lightship Sailors Association 

West Marine   
U.S. Lighthouse Society
Westerbeke Company

USLM Members  

Verizon Foundation
Zuni Maritime Foundation
USS Zuni / USCG Tamaroa  

Individual Donors
Proudly made in USA
USLM is a member
of the following organizations
Teach children about lightships
with the book Lightship

Editorial From School Library Journal

Kindergarten–Grade 2: Lightships were anchored where lighthouses could not be built. They protected our ocean harbors as well as points along the Great Lakes. The last one (Nantucket/LV-613) was decommissioned in 1983, so this fascinating picture book is a piece of nautical history. Brian Floca's watercolor drawings depict daily life aboard one of these vessels, cooking, sleeping, working, all the while rolling with the rhythm of the waves. Many hazards were involved. Big ships came too close, anchors lost their mooring, and weather caused many problems. But when the fog rolled in, the lightship sprang into action. Lights flashed and horns sounded, allowing ship traffic to make it "through fog and night, past rocks and shoals, past reefs and wrecks, past danger." The drawings are very detailed. Some pages are collages of small scenes. Many are full spreads. The sailors' facial expressions are amusing to watch, and the resident cat appears on almost every page. The front and back endpapers show a cutaway view of one of the vessels. This fascinating, little-known slice of history should prove interesting to every child who loves big boats.
-- Ieva Bates, Ann Arbor District Library, MI (review originally published by Reed Business Information, Inc.) 

The book Lightship, by Brian Floca, can be purchased on Amazon.com. For more information about lightships, click on Brian Floca's blog.
Poem posted on LV-112 while in service on Nantucket Shoals Lightship Station
"When a sailor gets to thinking
He is one of the best
Let him ship out on a lightship
And take the acid test.
And if he feels like bragging
I don't think that all of his tales
Will be of deep sea sailing
But of the ship that never

Poem provided by Peter Brunk, USCG-Ret., Commanding Officer, Nantucket/LV-112, 1970-71, who serves on the USLM Board of Directors.
This comprehensive New England shipwreck website is a helpful resource for SCUBA divers, maritime history researchers and enthusiasts. The site includes many photographs, charts, reference documents and history about numerous shipwrecks located in New England waters. For more information, click here.
The Sinking of the U-853 by Capt. William Palmer
When the German enemy submarine U-853 entered U.S. waters off Portland, Maine, in 1945, it torpedoed and sank the USS Eagle-56. Nantucket/LV-112, converted to the examination vessel USS Nantucket (1942-45) during WWII, helped save the crew of the USS Eagle-56. This is a book about the U-853 story, researched and written by Capt. Bill Palmer, a long-time shipwreck researcher, diver and preservationist.
Book description: "Out in the cold Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Rhode Island, lies the remains of what was once a feared and mighty hunter. It's not a fish or shark, for that matter it is not even a marine creature. It's what men feared the most when they went to sea aboard their vessel back during the World War II years. It's a German submarine called a U-boat. The U-853 was the last German submarine sunk in World War II. She was sunk with all hands just minutes before World War II ended. The once mighty hunter feared by all who put to sea, now lies in 130 feet of water off the coast of Block Island, Rhode Island, her grave marked only by a circle on the nautical charts, DANGER Unexploded Depth Charges, May 1945."
Capt. Palmer has been running a charter boat for wreck-diving, shark-fishing and shark-cage-diving off the coast of Rhode Island and Connecticut for 40 years.
German U-boat attack off Portland, Maine, during WWII, involving LV-112 (USS Nantucket)
This book is the story of a small U.S. sub-chaser, the Eagle 56, caught in the crosshairs of a German U-boat, the U-853, whose brazen commander doomed his own crew in a desperate, last-ditch attempt to record final kills before his country's imminent defeat a few weeks later in May. And it is the account of how one man, Paul M. Lawton, embarked on an unrelenting quest for the truth and changed naval history.
For more information, log onto: "Due to Enemy Action"
"The Finest Hours—" Book and Movie
"In February of 1952, one of the worst storms to ever hit the East Coast struck New England, damaging an oil tanker off the coast of Cape Cod and literally ripping it in half. On a small lifeboat faced with frigid temperatures and 70-foot high waves, four members of the U.S. Coast Guard (Bernie Webber and three other crewmen) set out to rescue the more than 30 stranded sailors trapped aboard the rapidly sinking vessel. 'The Finest Hours' is the story of their heroic mission, which is still considered the greatest small boat rescue in Coast Guard history." 
(Michelle McCue, 9/9/14)
Bernie Webber, who later served on Nantucket/LV-112 (1958-60) and the three other crewmen were awarded the coveted USCG Gold Lifesaving Medal for their heroism in what is considered by maritime historians to be "the greatest small boat rescue in Coast Guard history." Mr. Webber, who was a member of the USCG Lightship Sailors Association, was extremely helpful in assisting the USLM-Nantucket/LV-112 compile research information and historic documents about LV-112. He was a pleasure and honor to work with. Bernie passed away in January 2009. He was considered a real American hero and is dearly missed. 
The full-length movie "The Finest Hours' is available on DVD.
To learn more about
lighthouse news, click on Lighthouse Digest
Explore the oceans in depth and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution with
Oceanus magazine
Oceanus explores the oceans in depth, highlighting the research and researchers at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in news, features and interviews written by magazine staff, with full-color photographs and illustrations. Each issue covers a wide spectrum of oceanography, spanning coastal research, marine life, deep-ocean exploration and the ocean's role in climate, as well as ocean technology and policy. To learn more, click on magazine cover.
Lightships, Lighthouses & Lifeboat Stations: A memoir and history
Lightships, Lighthouses & Lifeboat Stations is part history book, part memoir, written by Bernie Webber, recipient of the Coast Guard's highest award, the Gold Life-saving Medal, and hero of the Disney movie The Finest Hours. While the public will recognize Webber's name from the movie and the bestselling book by the same name, few people know that during his lengthy Coast Guard career he served on lightships (ships anchored in dangerous areas to warn other vessels of hazards) in addition to lifeboat stations (small boat rescue stations) and lighthouses. Webber poses the following question: "How did the lightship men cope with the isolation, constant loneliness, boredom, fear, or just sheer terror? All were part of life on board a lightship. Rough seas tossed the ship about, rearing up and down on the anchor chain. This was a world of isolation, noise from operating machinery, and blasts from the powerful foghorn that went on for hours, sometimes days, at a time." Webber answers that question in this book, drawing on a combination of personal experience and meticulous historical research. Discussions of men going mad, lightships being run down by larger ships, anchor chains breaking, and lightships cast upon shoals are offset by humorous stories and the author's reflections on his best days at sea. Fourteen historic photos are included, as well as a foreword by Michael Tougias (reprinted from Amazon).
Help support the restoration of LV-112 by donating your old car and receive a tax deduction
How it works
We have teamed with Charitable Auto Resources, Inc. (CARS), to accept vehicle donations across the United States. Once you contact our customer service representative about making a donation, everything will be taken care of, including a receipt for your tax records. Sale proceeds will be donated to the USLM in your name. Donating your vehicle to the U.S. Lightship Museum is as easy as calling our representative toll-free at 855-500-7433. For more information, click here.
The Lightships of Cape Cod
Authored by Frederic L. Thompson, 1996, 2nd printing, 112 pages, soft wrap. Signed by the author. Illustrated with over 93 beautifully detailed photographs. Much sought-after, this scarce volume chronicles the history of the lightships in this vital area. Wonderfully detailed black-and-white photographs enhance the author's vivid description of the history and life aboard these vessels. One of the only volumes ever written exclusively on this subject, this fine work will make a fine addition to any library. Price: $14.95 plus shipping ($5.95), total: $20.90. May be purchased online from the USLM; just click on "Donate" button in this newsletter and add a notation in the area provided. Or mail a check or money order addressed to: U.S. Lightship Museum, PO Box 454, Amesbury, MA 10913
Massachusetts Lighthouses and Lightships
"Massachusetts Lighthouses and Lightships" by Arthur P. Richmond is an indispensable addition to the lighthouse enthusiast's library, required reading for those interested in New England maritime history, and a delight for anyone who enjoys coastal Massachusetts. More than 800 images, many never before published, include historic plans that describe the details of these aids to navigation, and archival and contemporary photos that trace through their history. The book covers all the lighthouses and lightships that marked the shores (exclusive of Cape Cod and the Islands) and guided mariners through the challenging waters surrounding Massachusetts. This volume also explores the interiors of towers, shows the lantern rooms of rarely-visited lighthouses, and gives fascinating facts about these beacons through their 200-year history. U.S. Lightship Museum (USLM): Excellent book-one of the better books published, about lighthouses and lightships. Credit: Review-Amazon Books/USLM
 U.S. Lightship Museums
A crew member rings the bell on the foredeck of Nantucket New South Shoal No. 1 during low-visibility storm conditions. The illustration is from "Life on the South Shoal Lightship" by Gustov Kobbe, Century Magazine, August 1891.
Kenrick A. Claflin & Son Nautical Antiques 
Click on the website link above to see nautical artifacts available at Kenrick A. Claflin & Son Nautical Antiques, which has donated publications to the USLM.
The United States Lightship Museum
The U.S. Lightship Museum is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization dedicated to the rescue and preservation of Nantucket Lightship/LV-112, a National Historic Landmark and a National Treasure. LV-112 is a museum and floating learning center, open to the general public -- a place for people of all ages to learn about our nation's seafaring history and the technologies that advanced the nautical and marine sciences.