This was a small cannon that was used in maritime rescues, a short distance from the coast.
A projectile tied to the end of a head or guide piece, was launched from land. The other end remained inside a box from where the projectile was launched. When the projectile reached the vessel, it let the head piece it was dragging drop down onto the vessel as a guide to pick up a thicker guide piece sent from land. Once one end of the thicker head piece was fixed on land, the other end was fixed at some high point on the vessel, creating a lifeline, and then a rescue basket, chair or harness was sent along this lifeline to evacuate people to land.
This was part of the life-saving equipment kept at the Estació de Salvament de Nàufrags de Vilanova i la Geltrú (life-saving station).
Canó llançacaps (rope-launching cannon)
First half of the 20th century. Bronze and iron. Associació Museu del Mar collection. Donated by Vilanova i la Geltrú Red Cross
Bala del canó llançacaps (projectile from the rope-launching cannon)
First quarter of the 20th century. Iron. Associació Museu del Mar Collection.
Boxes for keeping the guide ropes of the Spandau rope-launching cannon. 500 m Guide
First quarter of the 20th century. Wood and rope. Associació Museu del Mar collection. Red Cross deposit. AMM-8889
First quarter of the 20th century. Cotton, cork and esparto grass. Associació Museu del Mar collection. Red Cross deposit.