Schermuly Pistol Rocket Apparatus

Lost ships can be replaced but lives are gone forever

William Schermuly left his career as a seamen in 1880 and began working on ways to save the lives of men who were in distress or in trouble at sea.

In 1897 following a decade of experimenting with various ideas and methods, Schermuly developed a practical ship line throwing appliance, however it would not be until 1920, with his son that Schermuly would invent the Pistol Rocket Apparatus, and a series of demonstrations around the world was started. 

The pistol would propel a wire that could be attached to a cable with the objective of transferring people from a ship to the safety of the shore.

Mortehoe Museum is proud to have one of Schermuly’s Pistol Rockets on display in our collection.