Yesterday afternoon a storm passed over Ocracoke village. A lightning flash pierced the sky and a sudden clap of thunder rattled windows. And then the squall passed quickly by, leaving gray skies and cooler temperatures.
Just before supper Dale stopped me on Howard Street. The Ocracoke Preservation Society Museum had caught on fire, he said. Amy, Lachlan, and I walked down that way. Emergency vehicles with flashing lights surrounded the museum, but everything, we were told, was under control. Fowler and Chloe were there so we stopped to chat. They had seen the flames erupting from the roof. Had much water been pumped onto the building? we asked. Enough to cause damage we supposed. I was concerned about the photos, rare documents, and papers stored in the research library.
Later that evening we learned that the damage appeared to be relatively minor, considering what could have been. The library seems to have been mostly spared.
Speculation is centering around a lightning strike. I'm sure a section of the roof will need to be repaired, and work will need to be done to restore smoke and water damaged areas.
A special word of thanks goes to our volunteer fire department for a job well done in containing and extinguishing the fire. In this small, compact village comprised mostly of wood frame buildings surrounded by trees and thick vegetation, fire is a constant threat and danger. We are all indebted to our fire fighters for their community spirit, competence, and dedication.
Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is a fun island crossword puzzle. You can see it here.