Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Mr. Stacy Howard's Cool House/Little Free Library

Ocracoke Island just acquired its first Little Free Library. The Library is installed in the front yard of Village Craftsmen on Howard Street.

This Little Free Library is a re-purposed cool house (sometimes called a milk house or a screen house) originally built by Ocracoke native, Mr. Stacy Howard (1885-1968), in 1925.

Cool houses were used to help preserve food (fish, salt pork, eggs, milk, fruits and vegetables) before the electrification of the island in 1938.

This Cool House was restored recently by Philip Howard, owner of Village Craftsmen. This is a public book exchange. When you are on the island please stop by to visit the library. You are welcome to take a book to read or leave one for someone else to find.

We like to think that Mr. Stacy, who was an avid reader, would be pleased to see his cool house used today to promote reading. 

Here are a few more photos (compliments of Tom Baxter) of us moving the cool house/library to its permanent site:


You can read more about the Cool House, and see more photos here:


  1. Anonymous11:48 AM

    Unrelated to your post about the free library, but sparked by a post today from the OPS about WWII-era wrecks of ships and subs: To your knowledge has there ever been any effort to identify the remains of the unknown individuals buried at the British Cemetery?

    1. Re. the British Cemetery: To my knowledge there has never been any effort to identify the two unnamed sailors buried there. I suppose it might be done nowadays, with DNA testing, but I've never heard of any attempt.

  2. Julie S.1:02 PM

    What a clever way to repurpose a local historic artifact! Don't forget to register it with the Little Free Library site.

    1. Julie, I have registered with Little Free Library. Just received my sign...and installed it...a few minutes ago. Will update the photo when the lighting is better.


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