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Cutter Head

Ocracoke Island Journal - Sun, 09/21/2014 - 04:47
Many of our readers have seen dredges working in Hatteras Inlet or in the Swan Quarter/Cedar Island ferry channel. But I wonder how many have ever seen the dredge cutter head, the working end of the dredge that cuts through the bottom so the sand can be sucked up and deposited in the "hopper," cast over the side from a long pipe, or pumped through a pipeline to a "spoil island."

The other day I noticed that a truck from Cape Dredging Company in Buxton, NC was parked in front of the Pub. On the trailer was a cutter head. So I stopped and made a couple of photos for our readers.





























Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of late 19th century steamship traffic to Ocracoke, and the large Victorian hotel that accommodated the guests. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news082114.htm.
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Crime

Ocracoke Island Journal - Sat, 09/20/2014 - 04:38
I subscribe to Google Alerts. Anytime Ocracoke is mentioned on the web I receive a notification. Recently I saw this headline: "Compare Crime Rates, New York, NY -- Ocracoke, NC." So I clicked on the link (http://www.bestplaces.net/crime/?city1=53651000&city2=53748740).

This is what appeared! (According to the web site, "The crime indices range 1-100. A higher number corresponds with more crime. Our crime rates are based on FBI data.") --  

Violent Crime in Ocracoke.............61.2
Violent Crime in New York City....63.5
Violent Crime in the US..................41.4

Property Crime in Ocracoke...........71.2
Property Crime in New York City..31.7
Property Crime in the US................43.5

I suppose the FBI has been investigating murders, rapes, burglaries, arson, and violent assaults on Ocracoke that I was just not aware of! How could I have missed this mayhem right under my nose?

Isn't the Internet just wonderful.

Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of late 19th century steamship traffic to Ocracoke, and the large Victorian hotel that accommodated the guests. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news082114.htm.
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Talk Like a Pirate Day

Ocracoke Island Journal - Fri, 09/19/2014 - 04:40
Arrrrgh, Mateys!

Well, shiver me timbers, today is "International Talk Like a Pirate Day." So dust off your cutlass, don a tricorn hat, or tuck a treasure map inside your dress (if you're not an Anne Bonney or Mary Reed, you might consider different attire)...and face the world of land lubbers like the buccaneer you know you can be.

If you need a bit of encouragement, check out this web site: http://www.talklikeapirate.com/piratehome.html. Remember, talk like a pirate. You can do it!

Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of late 19th century steamship traffic to Ocracoke, and the large Victorian hotel that accommodated the guests. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news082114.htm.




Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Lorena, Ira & Elsie

Ocracoke Island Journal - Thu, 09/18/2014 - 04:45
I recently received a copy of this photograph, taken about 1896. Seated is Lorena Howard Wyche, and two of her three children, Ira Thomas and Elsie Marvin.


















Ira's grand-daughter, Liz Williamson, sent me the picture. It was taken shortly before Lorena died. She was only 31 years old. Elsie continued to live on Ocracoke the rest of her life. Ira went to West Point, and served in WWII as a two-star General.


















You can read General Wyche's story here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news092110.htm.

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Coming right up -- International Talk Like a Pirate Day! Click on the logo below for more information:

Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of late 19th century steamship traffic to Ocracoke, and the large Victorian hotel that accommodated the guests. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news082114.htm.
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Answers

Ocracoke Island Journal - Wed, 09/17/2014 - 05:00
A recent issue of Time magazine ("The Answers Issue, Everything You Never Knew You Needed to Know"), includes some interesting statistics.

Average length of an American worker's one-way commute, in minutes -- 25.5 (for Ocracokers it's maybe 2 or 3)

Percentage of commuters who leave their county to work -- 25% (for Ocracokers this is essentially zero)

Average distance in miles that Americans live from the nearest Walmart-- 6.7 (that's probably about 10 minutes; for Ocracokers it is about 3 hours)

Percentage of Americans who live within 3 miles of McDonalds -- 75% (0% for Ocracokers; we are about 2 1/2 hours from the nearest McDonalds)

Percentage of Americans who live within 60 minutes of a body of water-- 90% (all Ocracokers, of course, live within just a couple of minutes of water)

Percentage of Americans who live within 60 minutes of a National Park -- 75% (all Ocracokers, of course, live within just a few minutes of the Cape Hatteras National Seashore)

Life is in large measure about choices. We islanders generally choose nature, community, and family over convenience, high-paying jobs, and proximity to shopping centers, fast food...even doctors and dentists. Island life is not for everyone.

---------------------------------------- Coming right up -- International Talk Like a Pirate Day! Click on the logo below for more information: Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of late 19th century steamship traffic to Ocracoke, and the large Victorian hotel that accommodated the guests. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news082114.htm.
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Toads

Ocracoke Island Journal - Tue, 09/16/2014 - 04:48
Sometimes toads are numerous on Ocracoke, and sometimes they seem rare. I think it might have a lot to do with storms and hurricanes.

Many ground dwelling critters must die when high tides wash over the island. And it must take a while for the remaining individuals to reproduce, and for the species to recover. Lately I've seen a few more toads than I have for a while. This is reassuring.
















----------------------------------------Coming right up -- International Talk Like a Pirate Day! Click on the logo below for more information:Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of late 19th century steamship traffic to Ocracoke, and the large Victorian hotel that accommodated the guests. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news082114.htm.
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Counting Toes

Ocracoke Island Journal - Mon, 09/15/2014 - 04:56
The Atlantic Ocean at Ocracoke is almost always a great place for everyone in the family. Unless there is a storm brewing offshore, the ocean is usually safe, but still exciting. The bottom does not drop off suddenly, and the waves can be gentle enough for young children and elders. But sometimes the waves are powerful enough for dramatic boogie-boarding or serious surfing. In addition, the ocean is clean, and the beaches uncluttered

On Saturday the ocean was noticeably different. Lachlan and I went out to the beach in the morning for a quick swim, and stayed for an hour and a half. There were a few waves, but mostly the water was gentle and relaxing. Usually the water is a bit cloudy because constant wave action stirs up the sand. But Saturday the water was so clear that I could stand submerged up to my chin and still clearly see every one of my toes.

Neither Lachan nor I wanted to get out of the water, but we reluctantly went home to have some lunch.

I went back again in the afternoon!

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Coming right up -- International Talk Like a Pirate Day! Click on the logo below for more information:Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of late 19th century steamship traffic to Ocracoke, and the large Victorian hotel that accommodated the guests. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news082114.htm
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Drying Racks or ?

Ocracoke Island Journal - Sun, 09/14/2014 - 05:00
I recently came across this picture of the home of Rev. George Leffers (Leff) Fulcher (1838-1898) and his wife Cynthia Stowe Fulcher (1848-1913). They lived in Frisco, on Hatteras Island. The photo was reproduced in the book Fulcher Family by Ruth Fulcher Rickert.















In addition to being a wonderful vintage photo of a typical Hatteras Island home before the outbreak of the Civil War, the picture includes two interesting objects in the front yard. If you look closely you will notice two posts about 6' high (a man is standing next to each one). You might want to enlarge the photo to get a better view (instructions on the right). 
Each post has about ten rows of sticks attached horizontally to the post at intervals of perhaps six or eight inches. It looks to me as if each row includes four sticks (two side by side, one on each side of the post; with two more directly on top of them at right angles).
I have shown the photo to several Ocracoke islanders, but no one has ever seen anything like this before. My guess is that these objects were used for  cultivating pole beans...or perhaps for drying fish. Any other guesses?

----------------------------------------Coming right up -- International Talk Like a Pirate Day! Click on the logo below for more information:Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of late 19th century steamship traffic to Ocracoke, and the large Victorian hotel that accommodated the guests. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news082114.htm.
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Story & a Jump

Ocracoke Island Journal - Sat, 09/13/2014 - 04:30
Many of our readers know my house on Lawton Lane...a traditional "story and a jump," as they say in eastern North Carolina. These one-and-a-half story cottages were popular on Ocracoke from the mid- 1800s through the early twentieth century. A number of these iconic homes have been preserved on the island. Below are photos of the Kugler Cottage, the first "summer" cottage on Ocracoke.

Kugler Cottage Photo by Kati Wharton
Upstairs Bedroom
Downstairs Bedroom



































 
Sound View by Kati Wharton














----------------------------------------Coming right up -- International Talk Like a Pirate Day! Click on the logo below for more information:Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of late 19th century steamship traffic to Ocracoke, and the large Victorian hotel that accommodated the guests. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news082114.htm.
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Women Seeking Men

Ocracoke Island Journal - Fri, 09/12/2014 - 04:37
Before you read the following, please take a look at yesterday's post about six young Ocracoke ladies in 1890. They placed an advertisement seeking young men "who can whirl in the giddy maze of the waltz," and were ready to  "indulge in seaside flirtation without stint or reservation."

Just hours after I published that post I discovered this short news article in the latest The Week magazine:

"Good week for...Single men, after a feminist commune in Brazil that is populated by 600 women appealed for bachelors to move to the town. 'I haven't kissed a man for a long time,' said Nelma Fernandes, 23."

It seems as if there is nothing new under the sun. Every time you turn around young women are looking for young men to add zest to their lives! So, take your pick...Brazil or Ocracoke. As the village girls sing to Blackbeard's pirate crew in Julie Howard's Ocracoke Island musical, A Tale of Blackbeard, "So, come on around, there's a lot to be found, at Euphemia's Boarding House."

Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of late 19th century steamship traffic to Ocracoke, and the large Victorian hotel that accommodated the guests. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news082114.htm.  
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

What Were They Thinking??

Ocracoke Island Journal - Thu, 09/11/2014 - 04:45
I will let this advertisement, published Sunday, August 10, 1890 in The State Chronicle, speak for itself.

A GOOD OPENING----------For Young Men Who Carry Their Brains in Their Heels.
Six young ladies at Ocracoke, and as sweet and beautiful as the State can furnish, requests [sic] us to insert an advertisement for a dozen or two young men who can dance. They are ready, willing and waiting for an opportunity to whirl in the giddy maze of the waltz and to indulge in seaside flirtation without stint or reservation. Young men come to the rescue.

----------------------------------
What WERE they thinking?
Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of late 19th century steamship traffic to Ocracoke, and the large Victorian hotel that accommodated the guests. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news082114.htm.  
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Accomodations

Ocracoke Island Journal - Wed, 09/10/2014 - 05:15
FULCHER HOUSEOCRACOKE, N. C. 
Can accommodate ten guests. Terms per day 75c; per week $4.00.MRS. MARY FULCHER, Proprietress

So read the advertisement in the August 4, 1891 issue of the Washington, NC Progress.

Mary Gaskins Fulcher was married to William Henry Fulcher. Their son, Frank Treat Fulcher, a sailor & preacher, was a colorful island character. You can read about Frank Treat here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news052111.htm.

Mary Fulcher's great-great grandsons, Rudy & Donald Austin, operate Portsmouth Island Boat Tours
Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of late 19th century steamship traffic to Ocracoke, and the large Victorian hotel that accommodated the guests. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news082114.htm.

Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Snapper

Ocracoke Island Journal - Tue, 09/09/2014 - 04:39
Every once in a while, in the interest of Ocracoke Island history, I like to publish a typical recipe from years ago. The following is Elizabeth G. Howard's recipe from the "Green" Ocracoke Cook Book.


Stewed Snapper
Medium sized turtle. Remove shell, pour boiling water over meat to remove skin. Boil until it starts to leave bone. Remove bone and cut in pieces.
Fry out salt pork, about 1/4 lb. cut in cubes, in the stew pot and when pork is crisp add turtle.
Add 4 or 5 white potatoes quartered, 2 onions cut up, black pepper and pod of red pepper, 1 cup cooking wine, water to cover.
Cook slowly for about 2 hours. When done add 2 hard cooked eggs cut up fine. Serve with baked corn bread. 
Snapping Turtle Laying Eggs
I am not advocating catching and eating turtles, but I did locate this information on the Internet about turtles and the state of North Carolina (I cannot vouch for the accuracy of this information):
"Snapping turtles are economically important as many are harvested each year for their meat. Studies have shown that commercial harvest of snapping turtles in not sustainable and will result in extirpation of populations." (http://www.herpsofnc.org/herps_of_NC/turtles/Cheser/cheser.html)


"Individuals shall collect no more than 10 turtles from the family Chelydridae (snapping turtles) per day and no more than 100 per calendar year." (http://www.nmnh.si.edu/BIRDNET/permit/northcarolina.html)

Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of late 19th century steamship traffic to Ocracoke, and the large Victorian hotel that accommodated the guests. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news082114.htm.
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Bioluminescence

Ocracoke Island Journal - Mon, 09/08/2014 - 04:49
In late summer and early fall, when the ocean temperature is at its warmest, you might be rewarded by encountering a delightful display of phosphorescent protists that sparkle as you wade at the ocean's edge after dark.

As Pat Garber writes in her book, Ocracoke Wild, these one-celled dinoflagellates are "among the most prolific life forms in the sea." She goes on to explain that the light, which is activated by darkness and turbulence, "is produced by special organs [actually vesicles called scintillons] which release luciferin, a complex protein which acts as a fuel in the presence of the enzyme luciferase."

My most vivid memory of Ocracoke's bioluminescence is of a late night excursion into Pamlico Sound about 25 years ago. Two other friends and I had motored out in an inflatable dingy. As our craft cut through the water a wide swath of tiny flashing lights lit up around our vessel.

We anchored between Ocracoke and Portsmouth, and jumped overboard. As we swam, the warm water of the sound came alive, completely surrounding our bodies with the sparkles of thousands of phosphorescent microscopic creatures. It was a magical evening, never to be forgotten!

Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of late 19th century steamship traffic to Ocracoke, and the large Victorian hotel that accommodated the guests. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news082114.htm.
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Oregon & Hatteras Inlets

Ocracoke Island Journal - Sun, 09/07/2014 - 04:33
On this date in 1846 a powerful hurricane brought water from Pamlico Sound rushing across the Outer Banks and into the Atlantic Ocean. It cut both Hatteras Inlet and Oregon Inlet. Over the next several years, many Ocracokers, who were ship's pilots at Ocracoke Inlet, moved to the now more navigable inlet at Hatteras.

In 1872 the Bodie Island Lighthouse was built on the northern edge of Oregon Inlet.

Photo by Pete from Wikipedia


















Illustrating the dynamic nature of the Outer Banks, Oregon Inlet almost immediately began moving south at the rate of about 100 feet per year. The Bodie Island Lighthouse is now about 3 miles from the inlet. With the construction of the Herbert C. Bonner bridge in 1962 the steady southerly migration of the inlet has slowed, but sand continues to flow into the inlet from the north, causing navigation problems (and constant dredging).

Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of late 19th century steamship traffic to Ocracoke, and the large Victorian hotel that accommodated the guests. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news082114.htm.  
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Hognose

Ocracoke Island Journal - Sat, 09/06/2014 - 04:50
I saw this hognose snake in August at the Hammock Hills Nature Trail. I came upon it abruptly, but couldn't get too close. It raised its head, then quickly slithered away as soon as I approached.
















It was beautiful, though!

Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of late 19th century steamship traffic to Ocracoke, and the large Victorian hotel that accommodated the guests. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news082114.htm.
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

English, German, or O'cock

Ocracoke Island Journal - Fri, 09/05/2014 - 04:24
I have had a smart phone for more than a year. I soon discovered that my phone has voice recognition software that allows me to send text messages more easily than typing them with my thumbs.

Several months ago I also discovered that my phone recognizes more languages than English. I have been trying to improve my German so I decided to test my phone's language skills. I set my preferences for "Deutsch" and said "Wie geht's, Herr Schneider. Ich bin sehr gut." (How is it going, Mr. Schneider? I am very good.") I couldn't remember the German for "question mark" (das Fragezeichen), so the translation didn't have punctuation. This is what I got:

"Wie gehts herr Schneider ich bin sehr gut."

Later on I decided to see how accurately my phone would render Ocracoke English. This is what was entered: "Mornin' Buck. The tide is high on the sound side. Let's go fishin'."

And this is what showed up on the phone's display:









I guess my phone is not so smart after all!

Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of late 19th century steamship traffic to Ocracoke, and the large Victorian hotel that accommodated the guests. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news082114.htm.
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Coston Signals

Ocracoke Island Journal - Thu, 09/04/2014 - 04:30
At 7:30 pm on Friday, March 27, 1891 the #4 surfman from Ocracoke's Hatteras Inlet Life Saving Station spied a ship too close to the beach. According to the keeper's official report, the surfman "burned coston Signal and running alond [along] beach to ascertain Her condition. Seeing that She not Heeded His Signal burned another coston Signal."

When the surfman discovered that the ship (the 2-masted Spanish vessel, Borinquen) was in the breakers he "burned another coston signal."

You might wonder what a Coston Signal is. Invented by Martha Coston in 1859, these signals are "a very ingenious and effective semaphore" that uses three lights (white, red, and green) which, in combination, can represent the numerals 0 through 9, and the letters A & P. The widowed Mrs. Coston used pyrotechnics to create a simple but effective flare that could be used for signaling between ships, or between a ship and the shore.

Click here to read more about Mrs. Coston, and to view charts showing the codes used, and examples of the meanings of various combinations of letters and numbers. This web site also includes a visual that shows Coston Signals broadcasting the message P 2 9 3 A.

As it turned out, the Life Savers pulled their 1000 pound apparatus cart (as the "sea ran over the beach") to the wreck of the Borinquen. "Progress was slow," and they arrived at the wreck at 9:30 pm. A "bad current  [was] running abrest wreck," but the 27 crew members did not want to leave their ship.

The Life Savers "stayed on beach in case that the ship should break up." They built a fire on the beach, and remained all night and through the next day, until 3 pm. Meanwhile, the ship's captain had called for a wrecking company to pull his ship out of the breakers.

Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of late 19th century steamship traffic to Ocracoke, and the large Victorian hotel that accommodated the guests. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news082114.htm.
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Underwater Hertitage Symposium

Ocracoke Island Journal - Wed, 09/03/2014 - 04:36
The Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum in Hatteras is sponsoring an Underwater Heritage Symposium September 5 - 6. The event features two days of presentations from leaders in the field covering subjects such as emerging technologies for marine science and ocean exploration, the "Queen Anne's Revenge" and Battle of the Atlantic projects, managing beach wrecks in the day of digital media and budget cuts, laws protecting underwater heritage, nautical archaeology training initiatives, the preservation of shipwrecks, and shipwreck diving experiences.


















The Underwater Heritage Symposium is free and open to the public. 

Agenda
September 5-6, 2014
10 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
(Lunch is served onsite to all presenters)


September 5
10 a.m. Opening Remarks, Joseph K. Schwarzer
10:15 a.m. The Value of Maritime Archaeological Heritage and Cultural Capital of the Graveyard of the Atlantic, Calvin Mires
11 a.m. Diving the U-85, Jim Bunch
11:45 a.m. Scour, Burial, and Preservation of shipwrecks, Jesse McNinch
12:30-1:30 p.m. Lunch
1:30 p.m. Managing Beach Wrecks in the Day of Digital Media and State Budget Cuts, Nathan Henry
2:15 p.m. Queen Anne’s Revenge Project, John W. Morris, III
3 P.M. Battle of the Atlantic, Joseph Hoyt
3:45 p.m. Closing Remarks, Joseph k. Schwarzer


September 6
10 a.m. Opening Remarks: Joseph K. Schwarzer
10:15 a.m. Diving Through Time, History and the Shipwrecks of the Outer Banks, Marc Corbett
11 a.m. Laws Protecting Underwater Cultural Heritage off the Coast of North Carolina, Ole Varmer
11:45 a.m. A Brief Look at Emerging Technologies for Marine Science and Ocean Exploration, Past and Present, Doug Kesling
12:30-1:30 p.m. Lunch
1:30 p.m. Recreational Diving Technology, Pam Landrum
2:15 p.m. Nautical Archaeological Research in Carteret County, David Moore
3 p.m. The Nautical Archaeology Society Training Initiative in North Carolina, Nathan Rickards
3:45 p.m. UNC-CSI Maritime Heritage Education Programs, John McCord
4:30 p.m. Closing Remarks, Joseph K. Schwarzer
Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of late 19th century steamship traffic to Ocracoke, and the large Victorian hotel that accommodated the guests. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news082114.htm. 
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Fundraising Party

Ocracoke Island Journal - Tue, 09/02/2014 - 04:42
On Sunday evening from 5-7 pm Alan and Cary hosted a gathering of folks at the "Kugler Cottage" on Pamlico Sound. Everyone was there to cheer on the repair project for the skipjack Wilma Lee. As many of our readers know, the Wilma Lee was damaged during Hurricane Arthur, and a fundraising campaign is underway to pay the expenses (about $18,000) not covered by insurance. You can learn more about the Wilma Lee, Ocracoke Alive, and the fundraising effort here:  http://www.ocrafolkfestival.org.

Here are a few photos from the event:


















Edward and Susan Norvel (pictured in the above photo with David Tweedie, President of Ocracoke Alive) have offered to match up to $5,000 in individual donations. Additional donations are still needed to pay for repairs. You can make a donation here.

Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of late 19th century steamship traffic to Ocracoke, and the large Victorian hotel that accommodated the guests. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news082114.htm. 
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs
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