gateway to cape lookouT

Calico Jack's Marina
1698 Island Road
Harkers Island, NC

Lighthouse at Dawn

Cape Lookout National Seashore

Cape Lookout National Seashore was created in March 1966 and preserves a 56-mile (90-km) long section of the Southern Outer Banks, or Crystal Coast, of North Carolina. The park runs from Ocracoke Inlet on the northeast to Beaufort Inlet on the southeast. Three undeveloped barrier islands make up the seashore - North Core Banks, South Core Banks and Shackleford Banks. The seashore includes two historic villages on Core Banks, Shackleford's wild horses, and the Cape Lookout Lighthouse. A visitors center for the seashore is located on Harkers Island. Click on the following link for more information about the Cape Lookout National Seashore.

Diamond City

Though it would be difficult to find visual evidences of it there today, one of the largest communities on the Outer Banks in the latter part of the 19th Century was Diamond City. The town was located just across from the Cape Lookout Lighthouse on the East end of Shackleford Banks.

The settlement was initially a whaling village that grew to the point where it was named Diamond City in the mid-1880's. The town eventually had 200-300 residents. Most did subsistence living - fished for mullet and porpoise, collected oysters and clams, and caught crabs. Even during the peak whaling years, only 4-5 whales were taken.

What happened to Diamond City? In the late 1890s several storms washed over the beach and flooded the town. Then, in August of 1899 a major hurricane hit. Afterwards, people began moving away. Some even took their houses - floating them whole or in pieces across the sound to Harkers Island. For more information about Diamond City, visit: