Voorwerp van de maand – november 2023
Eens per maand presenteert het Stadtmuseum in samenwerking met het Bocholter-Borkener Volksblatt (BBV) een object uit de collectie.
The cork lifejacket
The cork life jacket has been around for many centuries. It was already in use in the Middle Ages.
Our life jacket was probably made around 1930 and once belonged to the Herding family. It was used to teach children how to swim.
The cork lifejacket belongs to the category of solid material lifejackets. Cork was often used for life jackets because it was inexpensive and maintenance-free. Its strong, buoyant and water-repellent material also provided the necessary reliability for long-term use.
Wrapped around the upper body, the cork lifejacket helped children learn to swim, for example, or served as a protective measure on ships, boats, etc.
The disadvantage of the vests was that they were bulky, severely restricted the swimmer’s freedom of movement and offered no protection against drowning in the event of fainting.
In the course of the 20th century, cork life jackets increasingly disappeared from people’s lives.
Inflatable life jackets, water wings etc. increasingly conquered the market and replaced cork in the long term.