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UP UNTIL ISABELLE HIT US A FEW YEARS AGO, THE ASH WEDNESDAY STORM HIT IN 1962 . FORTUNATELY NOT THAT MANY WERE INTO BOATING AND IT WAS BEFORE ALL THE BIG BUILDING OF HOMES CLOSE TO WATER ( POQUOSON). i PURCHASED A LOT NEAR DARE MARINA 50 YEARS AGO, HAVING FORGOTTEN ABOUT THE ASH WED STORM. I MAY NOT HAVE BOUGHT IT HAD I REMEMBERED. IT WAS WATERFRONT ...CLOSE TO WATER. I KNEW ABOUT THE 1933 STORM AND TOLD THE BUILDER TO BUILD THE FLOOR UP EQUAL TO SOME OF THE HOMES THAT DID NOT GET WATER INTO THEM IN 1933 HURRICANE. ON TOP OF THE FOUNDATION WE HAD 8 CINDER BLOCKS HIGH TO GET THE FLOOR BOARDS TO THE DESIRED HEIGHT. THE CRAWL SPACE WAS VERY SPACIOUS. DURING ISABELLE, THE HOUSE WAS COMPLETELY SURROUNDED WITH BAY WATER 4 FT DEEP----i HAD 1.5 FEET OF SALT WATER INSIDE THE (ELEVATED) TWO CAR GARAGE...LOST 2 FREEZERS...HAD BUILT THE AIR AND HEAT UNITS WELL UP OFF THE FLOOR THEY WERE SPARED.

MY DAUGHTER AND HER HUSBAND LIVE IN AND ARE ENJOYING THAT HOME (AND THE WATER -WHEN IT IS NOT SO HIGH) IN DARE TO THIS DAY.

MY PARENTS WERE HERE IN 1933...THAT WAS THE WORST OF ALL. I HAVE JUST COMPLETED A BOOK RELATING THE DAMAGE DONE TO THE BARRIER ISLANDS OFF VA (COBBS, HOG, SMITH, CHINCOTEAGUE, ETC) DURING THE 1933 (HURRICANE) STORM....NO ONE HAS MADE THEIR HOMES ON THOSE BARRIER ISLANDS SINCE THAT STORM.

DR. BOB ALLEN BORN IN 1034 HAMPTON VA
 

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Coastal impact

Homes, hotels, motels, and resort businesses were destroyed along North Carolina's Outer Banks from Cape Hatteras, Nags Head, and Kill Devil Hills north to Virginia Beach, where the waves broke the concrete boardwalk and sea wall. Even some cities further inland such as Norfolk and Hampton in Hampton Roads were inundated with punishing winds and high water. Construction work underway on the new Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel was dealt a severe blow, and a major piece of custom-built construction equipment called "The Big D" was destroyed.

At the Town of Chincoteague on Virginia's Eastern Shore near the border with Maryland, six feet (2 m) of water covered parts of Main Street, and most of the island was flooded to various depths. On adjacent Assateague Island, the Chincoteague Fire Company lost a portion of its herd of wild Chincoteague Ponies. Misty, the local pony made famous by Marguerite Henry's award-winning children's book Misty of Chincoteague and the 1961 movie Misty, survived by being brought inside a house. Also along the Delmarva Peninsula, at Wallops Island, a million dollars in damage was done to NASA's Wallops Flight Facility.

Further north, 60 mph (96 km/h) winds and 7.6 m (25 ft) waves struck Ocean City, Maryland. Waves more than 12 m (40 ft) high occurred at Rehoboth Beach, Delaware destroying the boardwalk and beach front homes. Sand dunes were flattened along the entire length of Delaware's ocean coastline. In New Jersey, the storm ripped away part of the Steel Pier in Atlantic City. Avalon, New Jersey lost 6 blocks. Long Beach Island was cut through in several places. The decommissioned destroyer Monssen was washed ashore near Holgate. In New Jersey alone, an estimated 45,000 homes were destroyed or greatly damaged. In New York, on Long Island, communities such as Fire Island were decimated; 100 homes there were destroyed. Wave heights reached 12 m (40 ft) by the shore of New York City. Extensive damage to trees and structures and beach erosion was also reported along the southern New England coast, particularly along coastal Rhode Island, and in New London and Fairfield Counties in Connecticut, although less severe beach erosion was reported in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Maine.[1]
 

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Sewells Point tide levels--records

I don't suppose there's a record of the 1933 tide levels at Sewells Point. According to data on WAVY.com the other day, the Ash Wednesday Storm recorded the highest level at around 8' in 1962, the 2009(?) combination of Hurricane Ida and a nor'easter (Nor'Ida) holds 2nd place at around 7.8', and Hurricanes Isabel (2003) and Irene (2011) are somewhere a little further down the list. The weekend nor'easter, on top of the previous 2 weeks of hard north-northeast blows, topped out at around 6' at Sewells Point.

Foy
 

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Per verbal history, our house on the North River in Mobjack Bay had about a foot more water in it during the 33 storm than it did in Isabel. Isabel gave us about 8' over normal. This Sunday we saw about 6'; not quite reaching the house. Much less wind and waves, of course.
The 33 storm cut off the New Point Comfort lighthouse from the mainland.
 

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Per verbal history, our house on the North River in Mobjack Bay had about a foot more water in it during the 33 storm than it did in Isabel. Isabel gave us about 8' over normal. This Sunday we saw about 6'; not quite reaching the house. Much less wind and waves, of course.
The 33 storm cut off the New Point Comfort lighthouse from the mainland.
Thank you for your post. 1yr ago I bought a place near New Point. You confirmed some of my thoughts!
My place was OK but I was thinking @ 8' I need to start worrying!. Less if we get heavy rain with winds!
On a Kayak trip with a local many yrs ago I heard same about lighthouse.
Today I rode down lighthouse drive -it has had water across road and I did not want too drive thru salt water. today had 2" of mud crossing the roadway.
It would not take much more-to cut off the lower section now. Glad I did not buy there!
 

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Flounder -r- Fluky
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I have all ways thought this was a cool pic from ash wed.
I cant remember exactly what restraunt or store it is, but there is a place in Nags Head that has has the real story about that pic ..... It's 2 pictures combined, one with the houses taken from Jockeys Ridge on a calm day and a second picture taken of rough surf close up at some beach down there. One negative combined with the other.
 

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Flounder -r- Fluky
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Found it.

Oregon Inlet Idiots
The true story behind this photo which many have claimed was taken during the Ash Wednesday storm on March 7, 1962.


From Eve T. via Outer Banks Connection dated 8.22.12:
"We sell this photo at Yellowhouse have for years.
Three years or so ago, I had a customer who knew the photographer personally. I met her later that fall and here is the story from Linda Westerman, the person who took the original photographs. BTW, all of these copies which are for sale at YH are now signed by Linda, and I tell the story to anyone who will listen!


Back in the summer of 1972, Linda was a college student who was waitressing on the OB in the summer, earning money for school. (You could actually do that back then! Earn money enough for college expenses, I mean.) Linda was a fine art major with a concentration in photography. She had her own b&w darkroom. Among the assignments she had to photograph for her senior portfolio was a believable "trick" photograph, made by stacking two or more negatives together. She worked and photographed here all summer, and she made this composite photo with no intention of deceiving Outer Bankers; all she needed to do was "deceive" (wink-wink) her professor who had given out the assignment. She took one photo of a row of cottages. Her best recollection was that these were in Kitty Hawk. Took the photo on a day without pretty puffy clouds...she needed the top 2/3 of the negative to be image-free. Then, during a summer squall, she took a close-up of some large waves. Put the negative of the waves in the top of the frame showing the cottages, and exposed them together in her darkroom to create the print. Eventually she gave a print, or prints away and at least one remained behind in a local restaurant. Summer ended, she and other students left the beach...but the picture remained.
Eventually somebody said, gosh, Ash Wednesday...what else could it be?


No one remembered the waitress who had taken the photograph which was taken in 1972, not 1962.


Different folks wanted a copy. The picture was taken down, copied, passed around, sold. Some time later, some enterprising person took a copy to a printer and had the lettering added: Ash Wednesday, Kitty Hawk, 1962... a bunch of stores bought copies wholesale. A few still remained in inventory when Pete and I bought the gallery late in 2005.


Linda was gracious, came to the Outer Banks from VA where she lives, brought her original negatives so I could see her files (and a bunch of others from that summer as well) and signed my prints for me. I now share revenue with her every time I sell one and the signature helps buyers remember the story I tell.
David Stick never included it in his Ash Weds. Storm book because he was suspicious of its authenticity, since it never surfaced in the years immediately after the storm, and the photographer's identity was unknown.


And that is the Real Story of the "Ash Weds Storm" photo!"
— with Diane Flynt
Timeline Photos · Mar 7 ·
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Fishboy, Thanks for the article. Kind of burst my bubble but next time I hear someone talking about this pic I can now tell them the real story.
 
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