[This is a reprint of a 2011 post.]
If you've been to Ocracoke you probably know that there are many cats
on the island. We also have quite a few dogs, but half a century ago
dogs were rare on Ocracoke.
I remember my Aunt Tressie expressing
her fear and concern when we brought our dog, Ginger, to the island.
Aunt Tressie, like most islanders had free-range chickens, and she was
worried that Ginger would chase and kill them. Keep in mind that most
people's food came from the sound, their gardens, and their chickens.
They could not afford to lose their primary source of meat...so few
people had dogs.
In 1955 Ruth & Latrobe Carroll, from Asheville, NC, wrote and illustrated a wonderful book about Ocracoke. Digby the Only Dog
begins, "Once there was an island. And on that island there were ponies
and cattle and ducks and chickens and geese and people and many many
many cats. But there was only one dog. His name was Digby."
illustrations show Howard Street, the docks, mailboat, Methodist church,
schoolhouse, lighthouse, and various homes. Unfortunately, Digby
is out of print. But here are photos of the front and back covers.
Maybe you will find a copy one day at a yard sale. If so, buy it and
treasure it. You won't be disappointed.
This month's Ocracoke Newsletter is about Old Christmas in Rodanthe. You can read it here: https://www.villagecraftsmen.com/old-christmas-rodanthe/.