History


  • A Tale Of Blackbeard Icon

    A Tale of Blackbeard

    A Tale of Blackbeard is a musical play presented occasionally in the summer season as a community theater production on Ocracoke Island.


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    Albert Styron’s Store (Historical Site)

    One of five general stores on Ocracoke during the first half of the twentieth century, Albert Styron’s store served the need of people living Down


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    Ammunition Dump Road

    An historic photo of the ammunition dump road used by U.S. Navy during the 1940s.


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    Assembly of God Church

    The Assembly of God Church carries on the Pentecostal tradition begun in 1938 on Ocracoke Island.


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    Berkley Castle

    Influenced by both New England turn-of-the-century resort architecture and by Colonial Williamsburg style, the Castle was built in the mid-1950s by industrialist Sam Jones.


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    Berkley Manor in the Snow

    An old photo of Ocracoke’s Berkley Manor in the Snow.


  • Blackbeard / Teach’s Hole

    In November of 1718, the governor of Virginia sent Robert Maynard of the British Royal Navy to hunt down Blackbeard. In a deep water channel off the shore of Springer’s Point, Maynard’s men overpowered the smaller pirate crew an beheaded their captain.


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    Blackbeard’s Lodge

    Built in 1938, Blackbeard’s Lodge was the first island building constructed specifically as a modern hotel.


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    Bragg-Howard House

    This house is representative of the basic island home, the historic “story and a jump,” a diminutive frame house, one and a half stories high.


  • British Cemetery

    This small graveyard is the final resting place of four British sailors from an armed trawler torpedoed in 1942.


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    Captain Bill Thomas House

    In the harbor of St. Kitt’s in the Caribbean, Captain Thomas spied a stately home with a wide veranda and decided to have a replica built for himself and his new bride back on Ocracoke.


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    Cedar Hammock Coast Guard Station

    The first lifesaving station on Ocracoke was built in 1883 just south of Hatteras Inlet near the current north ferry terminal.


  • Charles Lindbergh

    During a flight, Lindbergh was forced to land on a beach near the Cedar Hammock Coast Guard Station on the north end of Ocracoke.


  • Community Store (Historical Site)

    This old general store was established in 1918 and sold groceries, clothes, fishing supplies, hardware and even caskets.


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    Connie Howard on Lawton Lane

    Connie Howard on Lawton Lane in the 1950s with the lighthouse behind her.


  • Ferries

    The south terminal provides passage to Cedar Island and Swan Quarter while the north terminal connects Ocracoke to Hatteras Island.


  • First Automobile Accident

    In September of 1925, with only two vehicles on the entire Island, Ocracoke had it’s first automobile accident on what is now Howard Street.


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    Fort Ocracoke

    During the Civil War, a Confederate fort was constructed on Beacon Island, about one mile inside Ocracoke Inlet. The fort was destroyed on September 17, 1861, and in 1998, the remains were discovered.


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    Fourth of July Celebration

    An Ocracoke tradition, the annual July 4th festivities are enjoyed by all. Events often include a parade and a sand sculpture contest.


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    Highway 12 in 1956

    An Historic photo from the 1950s of Highway 12 near the current intersection with Silver Lake Drive.


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    Highway 12 in the Snow

    An old photo of Ocracoke after a huge snowstorm.


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    Highway 12 near Lawton Lane

    An historic photo looking north across N.C. Highway 12 to the entrance of the sandy lane now known as Lawton Lane.


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    Highway 12 Near Silver Lake Drive

    An historic photo looking away from the harbor across N.C. Highway 12 at its intersection with Silver Lake Drive.


  • History Hunt #4

    Can you identify the building in this picture? If so, you could win a “Planet Ocracoke” T-shirt.


  • Howard Cemetery

    The Howard Cemetery is one of the oldest on the island and one of the largest. George Howard, son of the last Colonial owner, is buried here.


  • Howard Street

    Howard Street is a North Carolina treasure. No other street has the history and charm it boasts.


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    Howard Street Entrance Looking Out

    An old photo taken from the entrance of Howard Street looking toward N.C. Highway 12.


  • Island Inn (Historical Site)

    Built in 1901, the upper floor of the main section was used as the meeting room for the Odd Fellows Lodge. The lower floor was used as a schoolhouse.


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    Island Inn Porch

    An historic photo taken near the center section of the Island Inn looking toward N.C. Highway 12.


  • Lehigh

    Approaching Ocracoke from the south or west the ferry will pass two metal piles in Big Foot Slough Channel. They are part of a dredge which sank in 1942.


  • Live Oak Trees

    Ocracoke Island boasts a number of magnificent Southern Live Oaks, many of them hundreds of years old.


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    Loop Shack Hill

    A U.S. Navy installation designed to detect and deter U-boats off the North Carolina Coast during World War II.


  • Mail Boat Aleta

    In the 1940s and early 1950s, Ocracoke’s main link to the mainland was the privately owned and operated mail boat, Aleta.


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    Methodist Church

    After a many years with two Methodist Episcopal Churches on the island, the congregations merged to form the Ocracoke United Methodist Church.


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    Monk’s House

    An old photo of Monk’s House, the building that now houses the Ocracoke Coffee Company.


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    Naval Base

    During World War II, the US Navy built a base on Ocracoke Island to patrol the coast and deter U-boat attacks.


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    Navy Beach Jumpers

    During WWII, the U.S. Navy used Ocracoke for a top-secret base for training a specialized unit in psychological warfare and deception.


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    NCCAT Ocracoke Campus

    The historic old Coast Guard building houses the Ocracoke branch of the North Carolina Center for the Advancement of Teaching.


  • NPS Visitors Center Icon

    NPS Visitor Center

    Ocracoke is part of the Cape Hatteras National Seashore. There are many programs offered at the National Park Service Visitor Center on Ocracoke.


  • Ocracoke Audio Tours

    Take a walking tour of Ocracoke hosted by Philip Howard and Lou Ann Homan.


  • Ocracoke History

    Ocracoke Island’s history has been influenced by Native Americans, European settlement, Blackbeard the Pirate, the Civil War, and World War II.


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    Ocracoke Library

    For many years Ocracoke boasted the tiniest public library in the United States. The current library replaced the 96 square foot small wood frame building in 1998.


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    Ocracoke Lighthouse

    Ocracoke Island’s most prominent landmark is its 75′ tall lighthouse built in 1823.


  • Ocracoke Ponies

    Ocracoke is home to a herd of wild ponies descended from Spanish Mustangs introduced by early colonists.


  • Ocracoke Preservation Museum Icon

    Ocracoke Preservation Museum

    The Ocracoke Preservation Society is a non-profit, community-based organization dedicated to the preservation of Ocracoke Island’s rich historical and cultural heritage.


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    Ocracoke School

    Ocracoke has the smallest public school in the state of North Carolina. The school averages just over 6 graduates per year.


  • Ocracoke Working Watermen’s Association

    The Ocracoke Working Watermen’s Association Exhibit presents artifacts and information pertaining to Ocracoke’s commercial fishing heritage.


  • Old Diver

    About one hundred years ago, Augustus Abner McQuire drown while attempting to repair the hull of a ship anchored off Ocracoke. He was buried on Ocracoke and became a local ghost legend.


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    Old NPS Village Campground

    In the 1960s and 1970s, the National Park Service maintained a campground in what is now the public parking lot near the south ferry terminal.


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    Old Post Office

    A History of the United States Post Office at Ocracoke.


  • Old Quawk

    The story of Old Quawk has been told on Ocracoke Island since at least the early nineteenth century.


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    Papa Howard’s

    An historic photo of Papa Howard’s house on British Cemetery Road.


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    Philips-O’Neal-Spencer House

    An old photo of the Philips-O’Neal-Spencer House which once stood in the Spencer’s Market area.


  • Portsmouth

    Now a ghost town, Portsmouth was a thriving port village in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth century.


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    Power and Ice Plant (front)

    In the late 1930s, Ocracoke was wired for electricity. A generator and ice plant was housed in this building in the Community Square.


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    Power and Ice Plant (side)

    In 1938, Ocracoke was wired for electricity. A generator and ice plant was housed in this concrete block building in what is now known as the Community Square.


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    Scarborough’s Groceries

    An historic photo taken on Creek Road between Silver Lake Drive and Lighthouse Road.


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    Silver Lake

    Native islanders almost always refer to Silver Lake Harbor as “The Creek.” More formally it is called “Cockle Creek,” a name used for generations.


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    Silver Lake Drive Opposite NCCAT

    An historic photo taken looking toward Windmill Point along what is now Silver Lake Drive.


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    Springer’s Point

    Springer’s Point is the last maritime forest remaining in Ocracoke Village. Off its shore is Teach’s Hole, where Blackbeard’s last battle took place.


  • USLSS Boathouse

    In 1883 the US government established the island’s first Life Saving Station near Hatteras Inlet.


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    Whittler’s Club

    Sam Jones built the Whittler’s Club as a gathering place for island men where they could swap stories, and whittle birds to sell to island visitors.


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    William Ellis Williams House

    An historic photo of the building that once sat where the Anchorage Inn is located today.


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    Willis Fish House

    The Willis Fish House has also served as a general store, a tackle shop, and an antique store. It is currently home to the Ocracoke Watermen’s exhibit.