Visitors to Ocracoke often ask me how old the barrier islands are that compose the Outer Banks. I will let Stan Riggs, expert coastal geologist and author (The Battle for North Carolina's Coast), answer the question:
"The time period important for understanding the development of North Carolina's present coastal system is from about 25,000 years ago to the present. From about 25,000 to 18,000 years ago...massive ice sheets covered the northern two-thirds of North America.... By 11,000 years ago, the shoreline was about 100 feet below present sea level.... [By 8,000 years ago, rising sea level was well up on the continental shelf....] During the period of the slowest rate [of sea level rise], from 3,500 to 100 years ago, most of our barrier islands formed and evolved, creating the dynamic coastal system we know today...." (Excerpts from Chapter 3, The Battle for North Carolina's Coast.)
This month's Ocracoke Newsletter is a photo gallery of past July 4th parade photos. You can read
it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news062113.htm.