Emerald Isle, North Carolina

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{household, population, female}
{area, community, home}
{water, park, boat}
{town, population, incorporate}
{land, century, early}
{son, year, death}
{line, north, south}
{island, water, area}

Emerald Isle is a town in Carteret County, North Carolina, United States. It is part of the Crystal Coast and is located entirely on the Bogue Banks. The population was 3,488 at the 2000 census, but as many as 50,000 visitors inhabit the area during the summer season, filling up vacant rental properties that do not count toward official census results.[3]

Today, the oceanfront is lined with both large and small homes. While there is a scattering of condominiums, there are no oceanfront hotels, and Emerald Isle has maintained a family-oriented atmosphere.

Recent beach renourishment projects in North Carolina, including Emerald Isle, have been both praised and questioned.[3]



From about 1 AD to colonial times, Emerald Isle was home to Native Americans. Later, the area was settled by a small number of whalers and fishermen.[4]

In the 1920s Henry Fort, who owned the Emerald Isle beaches and land surrounding them, hoped to open a large summer tourist attraction and ocean resort. Fort worked with developers, but the plans never materialized. After his death, his daughter Anita Maulick inherited Emerald Isle.[5]

In 1951, seven individuals purchased the 12-mile stretch of island for $350,000 from Anita Maulick.[6] Emerald Isle was sliced into 54 blocks of 1,000 feet, each going from ocean to sound. The partners drew from a hat for the ownership of blocks. Because they wanted Emerald Isle to be family-oriented, the owners limited commercial development and mobile homes to five blocks each.

In 1960 ferry service began, and provided wider access to the Bogue Banks beaches of modern-day Emerald Isle.[7]

In 1971 the Cameron Langston Bridge was opened to provide access from Cedar Point to the western end of Bogue Banks and Emerald Isle. The bridge, spanning the Intracoastal Waterway, offers a great view of the Bogue Sound and Bogue Banks. The opening of the bridge increased island development.[7]


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