In 1912 the Bureau of Lighthouses reported to Congress: "To promote efficiency and friendly rivalry among lighthouse keepers, a system of efficiency stars and pennants has been established. Keepers who have been commended for efficiency at each quarterly inspection during the year are entitled to wear the inspector's star for the next year, and those who receive the inspector's star for three successive years will be entitled to wear the Commissioner's star..."
On August 18, 1914, Capt. Leon Wesley Austin, Keeper of the Ocracoke Lighthouse, received this notice: "You are informed that you have been awarded an efficiency star. You are therefore entitled to wear the efficiency star for the succeeding fiscal year beginning July 1st, 1914. [It] shall be worn in a manor described in the uniform manual."
For $6.50 you can order your very own Efficiency Star from the United States Lighthouse Society.
month's Ocracoke Newsletter is the dramatic story of life-saver Rasmus
Midgett and his rescue of the crew of the barkentine Priscilla in August, 1899. You can read it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news052116.htm.