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The Cross of Lorraine Division: The Story of the 79th

Ocracoke Island Journal - Fri, 04/10/2015 - 05:06
The following is from a small booklet covering the history of the WWII 79th Infantry Division of the US Army --

On October 25, 1944 the G-2 report of the Nazi 361st Volksgrenadier Div. addressed the following warning note to its subordinate units:

"The 79th Division is said to have fought particularly well in Normandy, and is considered as one of the best attack divisions in the U.S. Army."

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Ocracoke Island native, Major General Ira Thomas Wyche was the Commanding General of the 79th. General Wyche, son of Rev. L. O. Wyche and Lorena Howard, was born on Ocracoke Island in 1887.

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The booklet explains that This was the division ...first to enter Cherbourg...first across the Seine...the division that swept through France like an avenging flame...the division with a combat itinerary like a railroad time table...the division that by sheer guts and a fighting devotion to duty had ousted a desperate foe from the hell that was Foret de Parroy...this was the famed Fighting 79th -- the Cross of Lorraine Division -- back at the task it had thought completed 26 years ago.

You can read the entire booklet here: http://www.lonesentry.com/gi_stories_booklets/79thinfantry/index.html.

And you can read more about General Wyche here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news092110.htm.

Our latest monthly Newsletter is the story of the Ocracoke Orgy. You can read it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news032115.htm.
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Words of Wisdom

Ocracoke Island Journal - Thu, 04/09/2015 - 04:32
 Today, just a few short quotations from native islanders:

"People come here because they like Ocracoke...but then they start trying to change it." Elizabeth Howard

"I've got a mind to go to church today." Then on reflection, "But I've two minds to go fishin'." Wallace Spencer

"On Ocracoke we don't care what you do; we just want to know about it." John Ivey Wells

Take away whatever you want from these gems by some of our island sages!

Our latest monthly Newsletter is the story of the Ocracoke Orgy. You can read it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news032115.htm
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Coquina Clams

Ocracoke Island Journal - Wed, 04/08/2015 - 05:37
On Monday I stumbled upon several small patches of coquina clams just above the high tide line. I took this photo:

 













Here is a close-up:



















Wouldn't this make a great jigsaw puzzle?

Our latest monthly Newsletter is the story of the Ocracoke Orgy. You can read it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news032115.htm.
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Clam Chowder Recipe

Ocracoke Island Journal - Tue, 04/07/2015 - 04:28
A reader asked me to share the recipe for the traditional Ocracoke clam chowder I made for the fundraiser this past weekend (see yesterday's post about the fundraiser).

I started with a recipe from the green Ocracoke Cook Book, published by the Women's Society of Christian Service of the United Methodist Church. This is Mrs. Beulah Boyette's "Wahab Village Hotel Clam Chowder":

Ingredients:
1 quart chopped clams
1 quart water
4 medium onions
1 pint sliced potatoes
Drippings from 6 strips of bacon (not salt pork)

Put all ingredients in pot and cook slowly for at least four hours. Add water as needed. This chowder should be thick when finished.

Well, I didn't exactly stick to the recipe. I needed to make a much larger batch, so I started with a bunch of clams (from Pamlico Sound...not canned!), but I didn't count them. I also chopped up my clams in a blender, so they were basically pulverized. Other people cut their clams with scissors, so then there are larger chunks of clam in the chowder. I had about 6 quarts of finely chopped clams and their juice.

I used about three quarts of water, about 7 or 8 pounds of peeled and cubed potatoes (I didn't count how many), and 5 or 6 large onions (chopped). I also used two packages of thick cut bacon (many O'cockers use salt pork, but I like bacon better) which I fried up. I broke the bacon into pieces and included all of the drippings (that bacon grease might have been the winning ingredient!).

I lit the burner at 7:30 and carried the chowder out to the Community Center at 10:30. I didn't add any water. I never cooked such a large batch before, but my chowder is never thick.

I didn't add any salt or pepper, either. I used the basic island recipe, then just did what seemed appropriate. I must have done something right since the chowder won first prize. Actually all traditional Ocracoke Island clam chowders are pretty similar...simply delicious!

Our latest monthly Newsletter is the story of the Ocracoke Orgy. You can read it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news032115.htm.


Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Clam Chowder

Ocracoke Island Journal - Mon, 04/06/2015 - 04:40
On Saturday Ocracoke Child Care held a fund-raiser, the first annual Clam Chowder Cook-off. Ocracoke Preservation Society decided to enter the contest, and I agreed to make the chowder. There were two categories -- Traditional Ocracoke Style and Non-traditional. Of course, OPS and I had no trouble deciding to make a traditional island chowder (Pamlico Sound clams, potatoes, onions, salt pork or bacon, salt, pepper, and water).

Amy took this photo of me opening the clams:



















Ruth Toth provided the clams. Al Scarborough helped me chop the potatoes, and open the dozens of clams.

Lo and behold! OPS won first prize in the Traditional Category. The Anchorage Inn (Sherry Atkinson, cook) won first prize in the Non-Traditional Category.

Photo courtesy the Ocracoke Current














You can read more here: http://www.ocracokecurrent.com/110344.

Our latest monthly Newsletter is the story of the Ocracoke Orgy. You can read it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news032115.htm
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Another Poem

Ocracoke Island Journal - Fri, 04/03/2015 - 04:22
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Here is another poem by Robb Foster. Robb visits Ocracoke often, and shares his fondness for the island in verse.
Ocracoke 
To sit on Ocracoke, my friend
And watch the sun go down again
Our sails unfurl to catch the wind
These souls will start to knit and mend 
A special place, hard to describe
Not many people would prescribe
To spend your days in simple ways
Among the dunes and salted haze 
The calming sound of ferry horns
And laughing gulls that never mourn
That evening breeze to kiss the face
It tells us, "Here's your healing place" 
And those we meet in shops and stores
Who weather here upon these shores
Who's kindness shown, not always spoke
We count them friends, the Ocra-folk 
We'll travel on to points unknown
With mem'ries, sure, to wax upon
But nowhere heals us when we're broke
Quite like the isle of Ocracoke... 
Our latest monthly Newsletter is the story of the Ocracoke Orgy. You can read it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news032115.htm.  /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-ansi-language:#0400; mso-fareast-language:#0400; mso-bidi-language:#0400;}
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Village Craftsmen

Ocracoke Island Journal - Thu, 04/02/2015 - 04:30
Village Craftsmen is again open for the season. We opened last week, excited to be able to offer even more quality American-made handcrafts from several new suppliers.



Village Craftsmen has been a source of fine hand-made pottery, glassware, wooden items, musical instruments, and much more since 1970.

Located on historic Howard Street, the stroll down the unpaved lane (you can also drive, and we have ample parking) passes 300-year-old live oaks, centuries-old family cemeteries, and cottages constructed with timbers salvaged from shipwrecks.

The photos below are a very small sample of some of the unique, finely crafted items we offer.

























Be sure to stop in and say hello on your next visit to Ocracoke Island. We are proud of our quality merchandise and friendly staff.

Our Spring Hours are Tues - Sat: 10-4 & Sun: 10-2
(Closed Mondays & Easter Sunday)

This month's Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of the Ocracoke Orgy. You can read it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news032115.htm.
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Movie

Ocracoke Island Journal - Wed, 04/01/2015 - 04:31
Just a few days ago, 21st Century Fox, a satellite motion picture studio based in Wilmington, NC, announced plans to produce a major motion picture on Ocracoke Island.

The psychological thriller (tentatively titled "Ghost Ship") is based on the story of the 1921 wreck of the ill-fated, five-masted schooner, Carroll A. Deering, often called "The Ghost Ship of the Outer Banks." Word on the street is that Johnny Depp and Robert De Niro have both been cast in leading roles.

The Carroll A. Deering














Shooting is scheduled to begin sometime in the fall, and islanders are already excited about the possibility of being cast as extras.

For more information directly from the studio click here.

This month's Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of the Ocracoke Orgy. You can read it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news032115.htm.
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Ocracoke Lighthouse Trivia

Ocracoke Island Journal - Tue, 03/31/2015 - 04:34
Following are several little-known facts about the Ocracoke Lighthouse.
Photo by Eakin Howard


















  •  1794...Alexander Hamilton, Secretary of the Treasury, proposes "erecting a light-house on Occracock island, or elsewhere, near the entrance of Occracock inlet...."
  • 1798...A wooden lighthouse is built on nearby Shell Castle Island (it is destroyed by lightning in 1818)
  • 1822...Jacob Gaskill sells, for $50, two acres of land to the United States for the purpose of building a lighthouse
  • 1823...The present brick Ocracoke Lighthouse is built by Noah Porter for $11,359.35 (Congress had budgeted $20,000)
  • 1854...A new fourth-order Fresnel Lens replaces the old reflecting illuminating apparatus (In 1853 Thornton Jenkins, Secretary of the Lighthouse Board, also reports that "[a]t the same time the present revolving light at Ocracoke...will be changed to a Fixed White Light...." This is the only reference I have ever found indicating that the Ocracoke Light was at one time a revolving light.)
  • 1860...New lantern is installed
  • 1862...Confederate troops remove the lamp and lens, to prevent use by Federal forces
  • 1863...Union forces re-fit and re-exhibit the Ocracoke Light 
  • 1867...Lard oil replaces whale oil as lamp fuel
  • 1878...Kerosene replaces lard oil
  • 1899...Fourth-order Franklin lamp replaces old valve lamp
  • 1929...Light is electrified
  • 1950...Metal staircase replaces old wooden staircase
  • 1955...The Ocracoke light is automated

Below are the Keepers of the Ocracoke Light, all highly skilled and dedicated public servants:
  • Joshua Taylor (or Tayloe), 1823-1829 (his title was Collector [of Customs] & Superintendent of Lighthouse) 
  • Anson Harker, 1829-1846 (first person of record listed as Keeper; Joshua Taylor is listed as Superintendent) 
  • John Harker, 1847-1853 (probably Anson Harker's son) 
  • Thomas Styron, 1853-1860 
  • William J. Gaskill, 1860-1862 
  •  Enoch Ellis Howard 1862-1897 (the longest serving Keeper; he died in office) 
  •  J. Wilson Gillikin 1897-1898 
  • Tillman F. Smith 1898-1910 
  • A.B. Hooper 1910-1912 
  • Leon Wesley Austin 1912-1929 
  • Joseph Merritt Burrus 1929-1946  (the last keeper to serve under the US Lighthouse Service)
  • Clyde Farrow 1946-1954 (Ocracoke's last lighthouse keeper, after the Lighthouse Service was merged with the US Coast Guard)
This month's Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of the Ocracoke Orgy. You can read it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news032115.htm
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

A Glimpse into the Past

Ocracoke Island Journal - Mon, 03/30/2015 - 04:22
Below is a transcript of a portion of an interview with Martha (Mattie) Daly Gilgo (1885-1976, former resident of Portsmouth Island, NC) by her grandson, Julian Gilgo, June 17, 1969, transcribed by Ellen Fulcher Cloud, and included in her book, Portsmouth, The Way it Was.

Julian: About how many people were living there (on Portsmouth Island) when you were young?

Mattie: O-o-o-h dear Lord, there was hundreds. Portsmouth has been a place in this world. I've seen myself ---and I'm only 83 years old, and I've stood on the porch and seen 30 to 40 vessels on their way in. Just between Ocracoke and Portsmouth, down there what they call Teach's hole.

----------------
Sometimes we have to be reminded of how important Ocracoke Inlet was for commerce along the eastern seaboard. At the turn of the twentieth century, as Mattie Gilgo relates, dozens of sailing vessels could often be seen anchored in Pamlico Sound. They were carrying lumber, cotton, turpentine, rum, and various other cargoes to and from ports as far away as New England and the West Indies, or even more distant places. Ocracoke wasn't always as isolated as it is often portrayed. 
This month's Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of the Ocracoke Orgy. You can read it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news032115.htm.
(Post revised at 11:27 am, 3/30/15.)
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Where is Fernando Po?

Ocracoke Island Journal - Fri, 03/27/2015 - 04:29
On January 23 I wrote about native islander, Eliza Ella ("Miss Lizerella") Styron O'Neal (1890-1953), who never left the island in her entire 63 years (except to venture a mile or so out into Pamlico Sound in a small boat).

That got me thinking about how things have changed, and how widely traveled present-day islanders are. I mentioned this to my daughter Amy, and she posted a question on Facebook for Ocracoke islanders: How many different countries have you lived in or visited?

At last count, there were 143 places, some of which I had never heard of (including Fernando Po)! They are listed below. I know some of them are territories of other countries (e.g. Anguilla), are actually parts of larger countries (e.g. the Galapagos Islands), have been altered (e.g. the Czech Republic is part of the former Czechoslovakia), are special regions (e.g. Hong Kong), or may no longer exist as separate countries (e.g. East Germany).

However, this list (literally, from A to Z) includes places in the spirit of Amy's question. I even wanted to include Rocky Boy's Indian Reservation in north central Montana, where I lived in the winter of 1968-1969, because it felt like a foreign country (or, more honestly, I felt like a foreigner in their country).

I know this is an incomplete list, but I think it's pretty impressive. Islanders, please leave a comment if we haven't included some place you have lived in or visited, and all readers, please leave a comment with suggestions for exotic places we might want to visit:
 
Andorra
Anguilla
Antarctica Antigua
Argentina Aruba Australia Austria Bahamas Barbados Belgium Belize Bequia Bermuda Bonaire Botswana Brazil Bulgaria
Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cayman Islands Chili China Columbia
Cozumel Cuba
Croatia Curacao
Czechoslovakia Czech Republic Denmark
Djibouti Dominican Republic
East Germany Ecuador Egypt El Salvador England Equatorial Guinea Estonia Ethiopia Fernando Po Fiji Finland France French Polynesia Galapagos Islands Gambia Germany Ghana Goa Greece Greenland Grenada Guam Guatemala Haiti
Hawaii (before it was a state) Holland Honduras Hong Kong Hungary Iceland
India Indonesia Ireland Israel Italy Japan
Johnston Atoll
Kazakhstan Kenya
Kwajalein Island
Lebanon Liechtenstein Lesotho Luxemburg Macao Majorca Malaysia Martinique Mexico Monaco Montserrat
Morocco Namibia Netherlands Nevis New Zealand Nicaragua Nigeria Norway Panama
Paraguay Peru Philippines Poland Portugal Puerto Rico Rhodesia Romania Russia Saba Saipan San Marino Saudi Arabia Scotland Senegal Siberia Sicily Singapore South Africa South Korea
South Viet Nam Spain Sri Lanka St. Kitts St. Lucia St. Maarten
St. Thomas St. Vincent Ste. Barthe Sudan Sweden Switzerland Taiwan Tanganyika Thailand Tortola Trinidad Turkey Turks & Caicos Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates
Uruguay
Uzbekistan Venezuela Virgin Islands Wales Yemen Zanzibar
Happy travels to all! And we hope Ocracoke is always on your list of favorite places to visit or to call home.

This month's Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of the Ocracoke Orgy. You can read it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news032115.htm.
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Two Quotations...

Ocracoke Island Journal - Thu, 03/26/2015 - 05:07
...from Ann Ehringhaus' 1988 book, Ocracoke Portrait:

"I don't think Ocracoke is a haven for any one group of people. I think it's a haven for a wide, wide variety of people. I don't think there is one character that typifies Ocracoke. I think for a small town it's probably the most diversified community I've ever been in."

"Someone asked me if Ocracoke was like a penal colony. I had to laugh. Utopia it's not, but there is a great sense of community here. I feel like moving to Ocracoke has been my reward. This is where I want to be."

If you haven't already read Ann's book, I encourage you to get a copy, and enjoy her iconic photos & insightful comments by islanders and visitors.

This month's Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of the Ocracoke Orgy. You can read it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news032115.htm.




Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Stunning Photos

Ocracoke Island Journal - Wed, 03/25/2015 - 04:53
In January I posted information and a link to Garrett Fisher's aerial photos of the Outer Banks. Earlier this month Garrett flew over Hatteras and Ocracoke again. He has posted another gallery of stunning photos of shoals and sand bars in the inlets, tidal flows, currents, soundside marshes, and ocean beaches.

Oregon Inlet by Garrett Fisher


















Follow this link to view 30 more photos that Garret took on March 8, 2015: http://garrettfisher.me/flight-nc-obx-to-charlotte/.

This month's Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of the Ocracoke Orgy. You can read it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news032115.htm.
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

The Ocracoke Orgy

Ocracoke Island Journal - Tue, 03/24/2015 - 05:17
Well, if that didn't get your attention, I don't know what will!

That's the title of our latest Ocracoke Newsletter...The Ocracoke Orgy. If you want to know more (there is even a picture), just click on this link: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news032115.htm.
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Answer to Puzzle

Ocracoke Island Journal - Mon, 03/23/2015 - 04:48
Jeff and Lou Ann are correct. The answer to Friday's puzzle is the fourth-order Fresnel Lens installed in the Ocracoke Lighthouse. In 1822 French scientist and inventor, Augustin Fresnel, discovered a method, using glass prisms and bull's eyes, to focus and magnify a beam of light. His invention revolutionized lighthouses. This is a drawing of the first-order Fresnel Lens that was installed in the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse in 1854:




















Although the Ocracoke Lighthouse was built in 1823, it was originally fitted with a reflective system. Not until several decades later did the United States Lighthouse Board convert to the more efficient Fresnel Lenses. A fourth-order lens was installed in Ocracoke's tower in 1854. Below are two photos by Eakin Howard. The second photo was taken from the bottom, looking into the interior of the lens. It shows the electric lamp changer.





















You can read more about the Fresnel Lens here: http://www.nps.gov/caha/learn/historyculture/fresnellens.htm, on various other Internet sites, or in Theresa Levitt's excellent 2013 book, A Short Bright Flash, Augustin Fresnel and the Birth of the Modern Lighthouse.

This month's Ocracoke Newsletter is research into the origin of the Ocracoke Island Wahab family. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news022115.htm
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

A Puzzle

Ocracoke Island Journal - Fri, 03/20/2015 - 04:36
In 1862, the Illustrated Times of London had this comment about a marvelous invention that had gained popularity around the world:

"[It] is a manufacture from which emanate the useful and the beautiful as kindred and inseparable spirits; where the highest faculties of the mind and deepest sympathies of the heart have equal place; and where the genius of humanity inspires and blesses the genius of science."

The object of the Times' encomium is a remarkable artifact, an example of which can be found on Ocracoke Island today, although very few people have ever laid eyes on it.  Can you guess what the Times was referring to?

I will publish the answer on Monday.

This month's Ocracoke Newsletter is research into the origin of the Ocracoke Island Wahab family. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news022115.htm


Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Three Early Shipwreck Reports

Ocracoke Island Journal - Thu, 03/19/2015 - 04:35
These reports are transcribed exactly as published in the Pennsylvania Gazette (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania). The long s (ſ) was in common usage in the mid-eighteenth century 

Tuesday, January 16, 1753: "Capt. Freeman from North Carolina, as he came out the 23d of December laſt, heard at Ocracock Bar, That two Sloops were caſt away between that Place and Cape Hatteras; that it was ſuppoſed they were New-England Men, by ſome Cyder and Earthen Ware being found on board; but that the People had got aſhore, and were gone up to the North County; Capt. Freeman ſaw one of [t]he Sloops, and fays, they run aſhore but a few Days before."

Thursday, April 5, 1753: "We have Intelligence, by a Veſſel in five Days from North-Carolina, That a Boſton Ship, bound into Ocracock, was caſt away the Beginning of March Laſt, near the Inlet, and the Veſſel and Part of the Cargo loft."

Thursday, June 6, 1754: "Capt Jackſon, from Edenton in North Carolina, in three Weeks, ſays, That fourteen Days ago, a Schooner, bound from Antigua, called the Queen Caroline, John Sawyer Maſter, was caſt away on Ocracock Bar; and that the Crew were ſaved, but the Veſſel and Cargo entirely loſt."

This month's Ocracoke Newsletter is research into the origin of the Ocracoke Island Wahab family. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news022115.htm.
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Poem

Ocracoke Island Journal - Wed, 03/18/2015 - 04:30
March 16 was Old Quawk's Day, so two days ago I posted the story of this colorful Ocracoke Island resident (you can read the post here: http://villagecraftsmen.blogspot.com/2015/03/old-quawks-day.html).

That post inspired one of our regular readers to compose a wonderful poem about Old Quawk. Robb Foster has graciously given me permission to share his verse:

Old Quawk’s Day - by Robb Foster

March, the ides, of Winter's end
A sorrowed tale will oft portend
That Caesar is just one to fall
The season, late, had one more squall

We stood in awe of dark'ning skies
The winter, still, had one reprise
The song she sang that day Cimmerian
For we, the children, here Silurian

We bade the day considered lost
For no man, wise, would pay the cost
To fish amongst a roiling sound
To cast that day, our ending, drowned

But on that day one stood too proud
Cursing God and Mother loud
He left this isle and safety’s sight
To save his nets despite this plight

Unto his own he stayed up north
So rarely would he venture forth
He left us here to pine upon
Why here, these shores, he wandered on?

Bolder he than all of us
Above the gale we heard him cuss
Raucous wails, the tempest spoke
Though, not above this fiery bloke!

Some say a pirate, some shipwrecked
This moorish hermit, we suspect
These tales as told will have no end
The squawking recluse failed to bend

For on that fateful mid-March Day
We watched the cullion sail away
No trace of him was ever found
No blighted skiff adrift, the sound

Beware the Ides of March, my friend
And if you doubt, I’ll swear again
Pay heed, old Quawk, we never found 
This day, the wise, stay island bound  

This month's Ocracoke Newsletter is research into the origin of the Ocracoke Island Wahab family. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news022115.htm.
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Farthest North Palm

Ocracoke Island Journal - Tue, 03/17/2015 - 04:57
That's the title (Farthest North Palm) of one chapter in Carl Goerch's 1956 book, Ocracoke. It is a short chapter, only four paragraphs, so I am reprinting it here, along with a vintage photograph provided by Chester Lynn. (You can see the steeple of the original Assembly of God church in the far left of the picture.The Williams Brothers Store has been long gone.)

"This palm tree grew in the front yard of Mr. and Mrs. Floyd Styron and, so far as I know, it was the most northerly palm tree anywhere along the Atlantic coast. There may be one or two smaller ones farther north, but nothing as large as this one. A storm came along recently and ruined it."













"Here's how the tree came to be there:

"A long time ago, one of the Styron boys was selling the Pennsylvania Grit, a weekly publication popular a couple of generations ago. He proved to be an excellent salesman and won a prize.

"The prize was the palm tree. It was just a little shoot when it arrived but it has done extremely well by itself."

This month's Ocracoke Newsletter is research into the origin of the Ocracoke Island Wahab family. You can read the article here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news022115.htm.
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Vacationers help needy families on the Outer Banks

Village Realty Blog - Mon, 07/20/2009 - 13:41
Saturday, July 18, 2009 BRBRBy Jennifer Preyss BRStaff Writer for The A href="http://www.dailyadvance.com/news/vacationers-help-needy-families-726249.html"Daily AdvanceBR/A DIV class=subheadline H3Pa. families give 2 families $1,400/H3BRWhen Currituck locals get the urge to complain about tourists this summer, they might want to consider what three families vacationing from Pennsylvania are doing to make life a little easier for the area’s neediest residents. BRBRFor the second year in a row, the Malagise family of Freedom, Pa., the O’Donnell family of West Mifflin, Pa., and the Wilson family of Bethel Park, Pa., have donated money to help an area family struggling to make ends meet. BRBRAccording to Ginger Candelora, executive director of Interfaith Community Outreach, the families were vacationing on the Outer Banks last summer when they discovered that behind the Outer Banks’ beautiful beaches and tourist attractions, there was a rising unemployment rate and hundreds of families in dire financial straits. BRBR“They were just talking one night around the pool and said, 'It’s hard to believe you’ve got so many poor people living in the middle of paradise,’” Candelora said. BRBRCandelora isn’t sure how the families learned about ICO, but they contacted her office and inquired about making a donation to local family in need. BRBR“They said they wanted to donate money, but they wanted to write the check themselves and give it to the person, rather than go through ICO,” Candelora said. “We don’t usually do that, so we found a Currituck lady who was in the hospital, she had contracted a virus, and was facing eviction from her home. We told (the families) they could write a check to her landlord.” BRBRThe vacationers agreed, and wrote a $400 check to the woman’s landlord. BRBRWhen the families returned for a vacation this summer in Duck, they again contacted ICO and inquired about making a donation to another family. This time, they wanted to donate an even larger sum: $1,000. BRBRAs Candelora went through her 44 faith outreach networks and the Departments of Social Services in Currituck and Dare, one family rose to the top as a perfect candidate for the donation. BRBRA young Dare County family was struggling to pay bills after the husband had lost his construction job. Their troubles mounted after his hours at a local restaurant — where he had found another job — were cut. BRBR“He finally found full-time work at Food Lion, but they were hurting with their finances and about one and one-half months behind in their rent,” Candelora said. BRBRInterfaith was familiar with the family because that’s what it does: helps needy families in Dare and Currituck counties by providing them with emergency services and funding. Since January, the ecumenical outreach program and its network of donors between Moyock and Hatteras have helped more than 500 families in the two counties. BRBRThe families left quietly about a week ago, and requested their donations remain anonymous. But Candelora, touched by their giving, begged them to go public. BRBR“They wanted to give anonymously, but we wanted to let folks see that our visitors care so much for our paradise,” Candelora said. “And they’re so young. I was impressed with that. It gives us hope."BRBRA href="http://www.dailyadvance.com/news/vacationers-help-needy-families-726249.html"Link to the ArticleBR/A/:OD/DIV
Categories: Outer Banks Blogs
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