Cape Hatteras Light

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Cape Hatteras Light in 1993 - 17th trip
Cape Hatteras Light in 1993 - 17th trip

Buxton, North Carolina

Built: 1870

This distinctive "candy cane" lighthouse towers 208 feet - the tallest in America. It stands as part of the Cape Hatteras National Seashore at the southern elbow of Hatteras Island warning seafarers of the shallow Diamond Shoals which jut almost 14 miles into the Atlantic from the Cape. This light is the second of three lights that have shown from this location. From 1936 until 1950 the light was temporarily located atop a steel skeletal tower about 2 miles northeast of the present site. Shore erosion continues to plague the structure and debate ensues as to whether or not the tower should be relocated to safer ground. [Update: The lighthouse was relocated 2900 feet further from the shore in June & July of 1999. It was relit on November 13, 1999.]

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Photographs by Donald W. Carter
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This article was last modified on 6/4/2009.

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