During World War II Ocracoke was home to a large naval base. Between 500 & 600 men were stationed here. The base was located where the Cedar Island & Swan Quarter ferry terminals and National Park Service Visitors Center are located today. The establishment of the base helped stop German U-boat attacks against US merchant vessels. The only remaining structure is the large circular cistern near the Visitors Center.
On the edge of what was then the "bald beach" (on what became known as Loop Shack Hill) the navy erected a radar tower, with communications buildings nearby. The base of the radar tower and a few other buildings still stand. You can reach them by stopping at the "Beach Jumpers" marker at the edge of town and climbing the hill. Be careful of the Prickly Pear cactus!
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Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is a list of traditional island remedies. You can read it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news032111.htm.