National Park Week Fun Facts

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Date: April 19, 2013
Contact: Outer Banks Group, 252-473-2111

The Outer Banks Group parks--Cape Hatteras National Seashore, Fort Raleigh National Historic Site, and Wright Brothers National Memorial-- are special places with special stories. Superintendent Barclay Trimble invites the public to explore these national park sites during National Park Week, April 20-28.These are some fun facts about the Outer Banks Group parks that you may, or may not, have known?

Did You Know? that Wright Brothers National Memorial:

  • has the largest monument dedicated to a living person? The Wright Monument dedication, which took place on Nov 19, 1932, was attended by Orville Wright and members of the Wright family.
  • was originally managed by the War Department when the park was established in 1927? This responsibility was transferred to the National Park Service in 1933.
  • commissioned 9,162 Junior Rangers in 2012.
  • has a visitor center that is a National Historic Landmark?The structure is a significant representative of Modernist architecture and the National Park Service Mission 66 development initiative.
  • was established in 1927 due to the lobbying efforts of a local citizen group -The First Flight Society.Today, the First Flight Society is still an important and active park partner with the National Park Service.

Did You Know? that Fort Raleigh National Historic Site:

  • contains a Maritime Evergreen Forest that is listed as a North Carolina Significant Natural Heritage Area?You can take a short hike through these woods on the park's Thomas Hariot Trail.
  • that archeological excavations have taken place on park grounds since 1887?The park's first excavations were completed by archeologist Talcott Williams. The most recent archeological work has been done by the First Colony Foundation.
  • will soon have the first General Management Plan to provide a foundation for the long term direction of the National Historic Site. You can provide input through June 4, 2013-see the park website,, for details.
  • contains the site of the first clear and understandable wireless voice transmission?Reginald Fessenden accomplished this in 1902 via a message transmitted from Cape Hatteras to the north end of Roanoke Island.
  • is the site of the nation's first and longest-running outdoor drama? The Lost Colony has been produced by park partner, the Roanoke Island Historical Association, at the park's Waterside Theatre since 1937.

Did You Know? that Cape Hatteras National Seashore:

  • is our nation's first national seashore?.The park was established in 1937.
  • is a barrier island system? And one of the most dynamic landforms on the earth.
  • is home to the tallest lighthouse in North America?Over 30,000 people climbed the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse in 2012.
  • was the location of an early and strategic victory for the Union in the Civil War?When President Lincoln was informed, in the middle of the night, of the August 1861 capture of Forts Clark and Hatteras, he danced a jig around the room in his nightshirt.
  • has the darkest night skies on the east coast?These dark skies are important to the success of sea turtle hatchlings, which use light reflection of the stars and moon on the coastal waters to guide their way to the sea's edge. Help keep these skies dark by limiting artificial light at night.

For more information, visit the park websites at or, or or call 252-473-2111.


Last updated: April 14, 2015

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Mailing Address:

Wright Brothers National Memorial
1401 National Park Drive

Manteo, NC 27954


(252) 473-2111

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