Thursday, August 19, 2010

Wahabs of Ocracoke

Earlier this month my good friends Jim & Eileen Zogby were visiting the island. Jim, who is of Lebanese descent, and president of the Arab American Institute, stopped by one afternoon and we sat on the pizer chatting for more than an hour. He shared with me a recent article he wrote about searching for the Wahabs of Ocracoke. Jim graciously agreed to let me publish his article (along with a few photographs) as our latest Ocracoke Newsletter.

"Looking for the Wahabs" is a delightful piece of journalism relating his visit with islander Myra Wahab some years ago, and her stories about the Wahab ancestors, shipwrecked Arab sailors who landed on Ocracoke's shores more than two hundred years ago.

You can read the article here:


  1. Anonymous6:39 AM

    I just read the interesting article written by your friend about the Wahabs of Ocracoke. I never realized the significance of the Wahabs' Arab ancestry and find the entire story quite amazing!

    Once again, you've shared another intriguing tidbit about the delightful people of Ocracoke and their heritage.

    This just proves there is ALWAYS something precious and priceless to gain from the unique history of the island and the people who have called it home through the centuries!

    Too bad these fascinating tidbits of Ocracoke are not taught in NC mainland schools.

    Keep up the great blogs, Philip!

  2. Anonymous7:51 AM

    Went to make a comment and the above comment is exactly what I was going to say! Thanks for your interesting stories and your blog!

  3. Anonymous8:32 AM

    That name Zogby hmm oh I know "The latest Zogby poll results... " public opinion polls especially predicting election outcomes... Zogby-- yeah that's the name .. Hmm Is there any connection? I suppose it is a family business perhaps...

  4. John Zogby, the pollster, is Jim's brother.

  5. Anonymous8:45 AM

    Well, to me-- it would be interesting -if the first census to enumerate the residents of OI also documented the nationality/country of origin/ancestry ( how ever the census bureau categorized it) of residents. and if so , how early are the data and when did the first census report those who claim Arabian ancestry. At what point did the Duke researchers postulate a Scottish heritage linkage and those living at the time conclude otherwise.