CURRITUCK BEACH LIGHTHOUSE

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    The Currituck Beach Lighthouse stands 158 feet above the dunes, with a first order fresnel lens flashing its first beacon on December 1, 1875. Located in Corolla, NC, it was built to fill the last remaining "dark spot" of the NC coast between Bodie Island to the south and Cape Henry, VA to the north. Many ships foundered in the 80 mile darkness between the two lighthouses, but this lighthouse, with it's beam visible for 18 miles, solved this problem. To distinguish it from other regional lighthouses, it was left unpainted in natural red brick.

    The Lighthouse Keeper's House, a Victorian "stick style" dwelling, was constructed from pre-cut labeled materials shipped by the U.S. Lighthouse Board on a barge, then assembled on site. In 1876, The Keeper's House was completed, and soon two keepers and their families began to share the duplex in its isolated setting. When the lighthouse became automated, the keepers were no longer needed and the Keeper's House was abandoned.

    By 1980, the Lighthouse Keeper's House was in ruins and much of the millwork inside had been vandalized. That same year, the Outer Banks Conservationists, Inc., concerned with the preservation of the historic property, signed a lease with the State of North Carolina. This lease charges the group with the responsibility of restoring the Keeper's House.

    Most of the exterior restoration is nearly complete and the inside restoration work is still on-going. Meanwhile, other structures on the compound have been saved. A smaller keeper's dwelling on the compound has been restored and is open to the public as a lighthouse museum shop.

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