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Ocracoke in the Fifties

Dare Wright

John F. Blair, Publisher
$19.95 paperback
7 x 9     
116 pages
black-and-white photography throughout
Brook Ashley and John Ogilvie, editors
Published in 2006

Half a century after the publication of The Lonely Doll, Dare Wright remains a subject of fascination. A strikingly attractive woman-child—a model and fashion photographer who always saw the world through the eyes of a girl—she was the author of nineteen children’s books that are still remembered fondly by a legion of fans.

Ocracoke in the Fifties, now in print for the first time, is Dare Wright’s only book for adults.

First and foremost, it is a tribute to one of Dare’s favorite places. It is also a time capsule of a unique island culture just past the midpoint of the twentieth century. And surprisingly, it is a testament to the timelessness of Ocracoke—which would please Dare immensely. Ocracoke has seen its share of changes, to be sure, but readers will have no trouble recognizing the durable little island off the North Carolina coast.

The Ocracoke Lighthouse, the British Cemetery, the pony herd, the white picket fences, the legend of Blackbeard, the weathered fishermen, the barefoot children—seldom have Ocracoke’s landmarks, legends, and people been portrayed so memorably as by Dare Wright’s camera and pen.

Dare Wright died in 2001. Ocracoke in the Fifties will bring a twinge of nostalgia to those who loved her children’s books and introduce her to a new generation of readers.


“With simple prose and beautiful photographs, this slim volume evokes the island's history and beauty. It conjures the spirit of those who founded Ocracoke village and portrays the strong sense of community that continues to this day. It is a graceful snapshot of the island at the moment it became ripe for discovery by the rest of us, thanks to a paved road and National Seashore status. Let's hope we prove to be worthy stewards.” —Amazon.com reviewer