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Tours Offered of Historic Weather Bureau Station in Hatteras

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Date: August 1, 2013
Contact: Outer Banks Group, 252-475-9034

Join a park ranger each Wednesday through Aug. 28, 2013, to explore the history of the US Weather Bureau Station on Hatteras Island.Park rangers will provide 45-minute tours of this historic structure at 3:30 pm, highlighting the experience of the weather observers as they lived and worked in this unique building. The station is located in Hatteras Village at the intersection of Kholer and Saxton Cut streets.

The US Weather Bureau established several weather stations and observation posts in North Carolina as part of a national network of weather stations throughout the late 1800s and early 1900s.Work began on the Hatteras station in early 1901, at a cost of $5,194 to build the station and $110.35 to purchase the land.Although construction was completed in 1901, the station was not commissioned and occupied until January 1, 1902.

Its proximity to both the Gulf Stream and Labrador Current made weather predicting vital to both mariners and residents of Hatteras Island. In the absence of modern early warning systems, weather stations like this helped to predict rough seas, tropical storms, and hurricanes. With the use of flags and sirens, weather observers often had just hours or minutes to warn residents of approaching storms.

Since being restored to its 1901 appearance, the station has operated as a welcome center by the Outer Banks Visitor Bureau through a partnership agreement with the National Park Service.

For general information on the Outer Banks Group national park sites, visit www.nps.gov/caha, www.nps.gov/wrbr, www.nps.gov/fora; Twitter @CapeHatterasNPS, @WrightBrosNPS, @FortRaleighNPS; or call 252-473-2111.

-NPS-

Did You Know?

The Principal Lightkeeper's Quarters and the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse move toward their new homes, a safer distance from the ocean.

The Cape Hatteras Lighthouse is the tallest brick structure ever moved. When it was built in 1870, it stood 1,500 feet from the shore. By 1999, the lighthouse was within 100 feet of the ocean. To protect it from the encroaching sea, it was moved inland a total of 2,900 feet over a 23-day period.