Corolla and the Currituck Outer Banks (Images of America) (Paperback)
The Currituck Outer Banks was once a beach land wilderness inhabited by indigenous Poteskeet people before being explored by the Spanish and claimed by the English. Early settlers made a hardscrabble living by small-scale fishing, farming, processing whales, and salvaging shipwrecks. Life changed in 1828 when an inlet closed, and thousands of ducks and geese descended upon the sound's waters. Locals took up wildfowl market hunting. Northern sportsmen bought marshland acres and built exclusive shooting clubs. The most ostentatious, the Whalehead Club in the heart of Corolla, embodies that golden era, which lasted 100 years. The area became more than a hunting destination when the first lifesaving station was built at Jones Hill to mitigate the loss of life from shipwrecks. Further shoreline protection came when the red-bricked Currituck Beach Lighthouse was completed in 1875. By 1970, extreme isolation and a population that fell to 15 people allowed wild horses to flourish. In 1984, a controversial paved road to the northern beaches encouraged rapid development and put the Corolla area on the map as a sought-after vacation destination.