1909 – Baby Saved at St Abbs Harbour

Wikimedia Photo of a baby in a perambulator

A wonderful rescue took place in August 1909.

A Gallant Rescue at St Abbs.

Sir:- While spending a week-end at St. Abbs, I witnesed a fine display of heroism and pluck on the part of four young fishermen which I think should not go unrecorded. About nine o’clock Monday morning a young lady visitor came on the pier wheeling a perambulator with a child in it, aged about ten months. By some accident, she let perambulator and child slip over the pierhead, into water 22 feet deep. Perambulator and child sank to the bottom instantly. Four young fishermen, one after the other, without taking time to take off their boots or clothes, instantly dived and made gallant efforts to rescue the child. These were happily successful. With the help of grappling irons, the perambulator, with the child still strapped in it, was hauled to the surface. Some of the lads, who had knowledge of first aid ambulance work, applied to the child Dr Silvester’s method of producing respiration, and this was successful. Then a medical man came on the scene and took charge of the case. The joy and gratitude of the mother need not be described. Now sir, I felt proud our Scottish fisher lads, and I would respectfully suggest that this is a case that the Carnegie Hero Fund Trustees might well consider and acknowledge.

David Wilson, NL Steamer Pole Star

The Scotsman, Wednesday 11 August 1909

The Silvester method is a method of artificial respiration in which the subject is laid on his or her back and air is expelled from the lungs by pressing the arms over the chest and fresh air drawn in by pulling them above the head. You can find out more about Henry Robert Silvester and his method via this pdf.


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