"You have to go out, you don't have to come back." That was the unofficial motto of the U.S. Life-Saving Service. Crews of surfmen, under the command of a Station Keeper, practiced drills six days a week and patrolled the beaches twenty-four hours a day--ready to risk their lives to rescue strangers from the perils of the sea.
Three stations were constructed on Core Banks: the Cape Lookout Station, built approximately two miles south of the lighthouse; the Portsmouth Station, built in Portsmouth Village; and the Core Banks Station, built between the other two. For more information on the surfmen who manned these stations, visit the Surfmen of the U.S. Life-Saving Service webpage.