Ocracokers were shocked yesterday to learn about the National Park Service's newly released plans for the Ocracoke lighthouse. It seems that a researcher for the NPS was perusing original documents in the Library of Congress when he stumbled upon an 1823 directive, adopted by Congress, and signed into law by James Monroe, 5th President of the United States. The directive specifies the light beam patterns and the "day marker" colors for each lighthouse along the Atlantic coast. Ocracoke is listed as "steady beam...red and white, alternating horizontal bands."
Now, after nearly two hundred years, the Park Service has made plans to repaint the Ocracoke lighthouse red and white. The news spread like wildfire through the village.
Most residents were outraged and ready to fight the federal bureaucracy, although a few felt that the 1823 directive should be honored. In a matter of hours the Ocracoke Civic and Business Association issued an official statement, and drafted an online survey to gather opinions about the new colors. Be sure to make your voice heard. Take the survey by clicking here.
We'll keep you updated as this story unfolds.
Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of a 1911 wedding on Portsmouth Island. You can read it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news022111.htm.