Visit a Historical North Carolina Beach Town for Maritime Forest
Rich in history and culture, Pine Knoll Shores is heaven on Earth. With over fifty percent of the residents being one time visitors, you too will fall in love.
Pine Knoll Shores is a beautiful Town located between Atlantic Beach and Indian Beach on the Bogue Banks. With a year-round population of approximately 1700, this peaceful community is designed to coexist with the maritime forest between the oceanside dunes and the Bogue Sound.
Officially incorporated as the Town of Pine Knoll Shores in 1973, the land itself was actually first explored hundreds of years earlier. A historical marker marks the corner of Hwy 58 and Roosevelt Boulevard, marking the spot of the first European landing on the North Carolina Coast.
Giovanni Da Verrazano, a Florentine navigator, in the service of France explored the state’s coast from Cape Fear to Kitty Hawk in 1524.
An Oasis owned by President Roosevelt’s Family
Originally called the “Isle of Pine”, substantial acreage was purchased by Alice Hoffman in 1918 where she made her home off and on until her death in 1953. The property was then willed to her niece, wife of President Theodore Roosevelt Jr, and her four children. It was the Roosevelt family who planned the original development of the town. The main priority was to cause minimum disturbance to the island and its wildlife and to develop with sensitivity to the ecology of the maritime forest in mind.
Today, Town Officials stress the importance of protecting the environment and enforce regulations restricting the amount of acreage that can be cleared for development. As the town was being built, early town planners worked hard to make sure Pine Knoll Shores was developed primarily as a residential community, and to date, it has remained so.
Tree City USA
The Town’s nationally recognized designation as a “Tree City” demonstrates its commitment to the preservation of its diverse forestlands. Pine Knoll Shores strives to provide the highest quality of coastal living in harmony with nature.
Originally, Town business was conducted in The Atlantis Lodge, however, the Roosevelts eventually gave the Town a little house to serve as Town Hall. In July 1974 that house was moved to a 25-acre plot on Pine Knoll Boulevard, where the present-day Town Hall sits today. More than just a building for town business, the property is a tranquil park surrounded by gardens, trails, and wildlife.
The Town is currently developing a park, which is located in part behind the Town Hall, that will be open to residents, nature enthusiasts and incorporate various water accesses for different avenues of recreation as well as trails suitable for handicapped visitors.
Must-See Tourist Attractions
Pine Knoll Shores is also home to one of three North Carolina Aquariums. Having recently received a $25 million expansion, the aquarium includes over 40 new exhibits displaying both North Carolina Aquatic Life and exhibits pertaining to wildlife from the mountainous regions to the West.
Another notable attraction, the Shipwreck Pevensey, is located off the shore where the Iron Steamer Pier once stood. On June 9th, 1864 the Confederate ship was run aground by the Union supply ship, New Berne. The Pevensey’s crew caused the ship’s boilers to explode and then escaped ashore where they were captured and taken prisoner to Fort Macon. Typical of the type of vessel used to run the Federal Blockade during the Civil War, she had one deck, two masts, and was schooner-rigged. The Pevensey ran the blockade four times before she was lost. At low tide, the top of the shipwreck is sometimes still visible.
Mayor of Pine Knoll Shores
“This area of the coast is rich with visible history, both underwater and on land,” said Pine Knoll Shores Mayor Joan E. Lamson. “With so much development upon us, it is important that we preserve and remember the historical events and the elements that remain to continue to enrich our cultural heritage.”