Beach Town in a Forest

Beach Town in a Forest
Beach Town in a Forest, Pine Knoll Shores located in Carteret County on North Carolina's Crysal Coast. Photo compliments of Bill Flexman and Dave Prutzman

Saturday, March 9, 2019

Shore Line 1976

The Shore Line Story Continues...

Early drawing of Marine Resource Center

Among big news stories in 1976 are a marine resources center in Pine Knoll Shores, a miniature golf course on the town’s eastern border, a high-rise bridge over Cape Carteret, more condominiums east and west of Pine Knoll Townes, plans for a Fire Department, formation of a Community Appearance Commission and Shore Line’s introduction of new staff members. As the town marks another year of growth, Betty Hammon and Mary Doll remain as editors and receive official commendation for “the valuable contribution to the life of the community made by their paper.” 

In July, they announce: “As the town grows so grows the Shoreline group.” Joining those collating and mailing issues are a typist and four new writers—Verna Armstrong, Audrey Hoffmer, Newell Haller and Louise Baker. All are volunteers, but mailing costs have risen, so 237 residences receiving Pine KnollShore Lineare asked to pay $3.50 for a year’s subscription, up a dollar from 1974. 

The January issue begins with two announcements: the town has collected $54,683 in property taxes and has just added $1,373,000 worth of new property to its tax records. Following these reports is an amendment to the zoning ordinance preventing construction of a freestanding convention center. All year long, the paper reflects an acceptance of growth and a desire to control it. 

Indicative of this tension is some discussion every month of small and large issues concerning the town’s appearance—litter, garbage, zoning and the need to preserve the island’s pristine natural environment. Then, in December comes news of a Community Appearance Commission, 
…which shall attempt to assure “that proposed construction will make effective use of the terrain and environment, …preserve to the extent possible existing trees and vegetation and advise on exterior design and materials that harmonize well with the natural environment….” Town Attorney Taylor points out that such a Commission can advise only. 

Following the Appearance Commission announcement comes an explanation of a “new provision” in the zoning ordinance: 
…while maintaining the allowable density of ten living units per acre, [the provision] permits density to be varied on specific lots in a subdivision up to a maximum of 15 living units per acre in order to achieve best use of land and terrain, provided the average density of the entire subdivision does not exceed 10 living units per acre.
This revised zoning eases the way for developers who are about to build condominiums, while still controlling the size of those complexes.

In November 1976, a news “FLASH” appears: 
On October 28 Ray Scoggins issued a building permit to Balwade to build 32 condominiums west of Pine Knoll Townes. …There will be two buildings, one behind the other parallel with the ocean. Much of the natural vegetation on the site will be retained and the rest restored to its natural condition once the construction is completed. Construction is also starting on Coral Bay West, which is west of the John Yancey across from Reefstone.
Twenty-four condominiums are in the plans for Coral Bay West. 

In May, Shore Line writers admit not knowing much about existing multi-family units but begin to go outside their single-family community to introduce neighbors in Pine Knoll Townes. In the process, they learn about governance of units there: 
Here’s the thing: …BEAHAVEN, INC… handle[s] the two western-most rows of the condominiums…. Soon they will be turning the development over to its owners’ association…. the other four rows of condominiums, to the east, are separate and function themselves, with their owners’ association in command; there are ninety-two units there.

The size of this complex is surprising since only 237 residences were receiving the Shore Line. Also, this was the first acknowledgement in the paper of homeowner associations other than PKA and PIKSCO. Reefstone, of course, must have had its own association, and with the new condos would come new associations.

Another acknowledgement of growth is creation of a Committee on Fire Protection and Rescue Squads. Its proposal is reported as follows: 
Pine Knoll Shores take over its own fire and rescue work at such time as the town has a municipal center, fire and rescue equipment and a trained volunteer staff… that would include 25 men between 20 and 35 years of age, and more than 80 from the retired group.

Photo from Rescue Squad Album. Screenshot taken by Susan Phillips

There is no mention of a concern expressed earlier that Pine Knoll Shores does not have men young enough to staff a volunteer fire and rescue force. However, before taking action, commissioners wait for results of a referendum. In the meantime, the committee continues its work with Jack Goldstein and Bill Uebele as co-chairs.

1976 was an active hurricane year, and there seem to be regrets about nixing construction of a bridge in Pine Knoll Shores. Even though Bogue Banks does not experience a direct hit, worries are evident: “We might well be cut off because of high water toward Salter Path and high wind could force closing of the Atlantic Beach causeway.” 

Photo from this blog. Post title: Links and Bridges

Opening of bridge from Cape Carteret also makes locals think about a third bridge: 
DID YOU HEAR mumbles again recently about the third bridge to the island? The Emerald Isle one is such a breath-taker, rising above the waters gracefully, giving us that wide view of boats in the waterway, … egrets moving stifflegged along the edges of the many scattered islands, that we kind of hope a third bridge, if it comes, will be like that. 
But, “mumbles” did not lead to action.

On March 11, 1976, lawyers representing owners of a miniature golf course ask Pine Knoll Shores’ Board of Commissioners for clarification of zoning for a lot identified as Commercial 4, retail sales and services. Then, in July, comes the announcement: “JUNGLEGOLF is here, like a setting out of Six Flags Over Somewhere Or Other, full of waterfalls, giant zoo creatures, and palm trees. And 18 holes of miniature golf nestled in its midst.” 

Shore Line writers go on to say:
We talked with Mr. Al Tirrell, the builder and franchiser of this creatively put together playground on Salter Path Rd. next to the Yuletide Shop; he pointed out the lava rock they brought from California—it’s gray and shimmery and very lightweight which makes it easy to work with. There is sod from Georgia; there are thatch roofs from Florida, and 21 varieties of wildlife.
The original owners are L.P. La Bruce, described as “a nurseryman” and A.S. Miles, both from Myrtle Beach. Jungle Land would remain in business for over 30 years.

However, real excitement among locals is reserved for the long-awaited gala opening of a Marine Resources Center. The building is up and seems to start functioning before its official opening. In January 1976, the center has begun to host talks and films on coastal topics. It also has become a popular meeting place in town. Then, in May, Shore Line writers ask: “When will the Marine Resources Center open officially?” Their answer: “No one is quite sure.” 

In describing the center’s functions, Director Ned Smith makes the first mention of “16 aquarium tanks,” which “will be seething with marine life typical of our very own coastal waters….” Also, we learn Charles Johnson will be the first “Aquarium Specialist,” and he talks about volunteers to help “in the washing of the gravel, …putting up some of the displays…. Then after that, the big thing will be keeping the tanks going—cleaned and replenished. Eventually tour guides will probably be trained….” It’s beginning to sound like Pine Knoll Shores’ Aquarium.

Later Drawing of Pine Knoll Shores Aquarium

In June, readers learn the street leading to the Marine Resources Center will be been named “Roosevelt Drive” in honor of “donors of the property.” In August, the Board of Commissioners begin holding regular meetings at the center on the first Tuesday of each month. 

Then, finally, in September, readers are told the “opening of the Marine Resources Center here in PKS” attracted a large crowd, “Somebody said that 300 chairs had been set up in the auditorium area and there were many standees in the periphery…. The Governor, in his remarks, said that the marine projects undertaken in these centers will have importance throughout the world….” Well, Pine Knoll Shores’ Aquarium may not be world famous, but the enthusiasm of Governor Holshouser and local residents seems justifiable given how successful it has been.

Seldom in the 1976 Shore Line is there any sense of changes in the larger world, but sometimes references make a contemporary reader think of such changes. For example, in 1976, articles during hurricane season refer to Civil Defense, which started in this country at the beginning of the Cold War—1951, to be exact—and gradually changed its mission from disaster preparedness in case of atomic/nuclear attack to recovery efforts after natural disasters. In 1976, Pine Knoll Shores has local volunteers working as a Civil Defense Corps. In 1994, Civil Defense morphs into Community Emergency Response (CERT) under FEMA, which has been part of Homeland Security since 2003. 

However, the consistent focus of the Shore Lineis local, so it seems appropriate to end with a 1976 description of a talk given by Cap’n Jim Willis, a source then and now of local lore. He explains regional terms of address: “…a man over forty should be called Cap’n, and a man over seventy is called Uncle as a mark of respect. And most people are called by their first and middle name or by the first name with a descriptive prefix such as Little George and Big George to distinguish father from son….” To some extent, this tradition may persist among locals on Bogue Banks, but even in 1976, it sounds quaint to newcomers who are building Pine Knoll Shores.

Post Author: Phyllis Makuck

Shore Line 1975

Growing pains are evident in 1975 reporting on Pine Knoll Shore.... 

Swing bridge is originally the only bridge from mainland to Bogue Banks

History in the making and resistance to change are unconscious themes of Shore Line editors Mary Doll and Betty Hammon in 1975. References to bridges, roads, ordinances, fire protection, garbage collection, mail delivery, and boundaries dominate the paper’s pages. 

In five years—from 1970 to 1975, Pine Knoll Shores’ population has grown from 60 to 680. Doll and Hammon note: “There were 350 at the time of incorporation.” In 1975, like today, the majority of the population is over 50 with a sizeable number over 60. However, unlike today, Pine Knoll Shores residents are clustered in a small geographical area, from the border of Atlantic Beach to Bridge Road (now Pine Knoll Boulevard). 

There is no mention yet of Beacon’s Reach (it is still undeveloped land), but the subject of annexation of property further to the west, east of Salter Path, is a hot issue. Indian Beach is also interested in this land. Doll and Hammon do not define specifically the acreage in question, but we do know that in 1975 Pine Knoll Shores’ western boundary is about where Beacon’s Reach ends today. In May 1975, Shore Line covers a public hearing in Pine Knoll Shores on the subject: 
Points were brought up regarding costs of services as compared with anticipated income. Services which would have to be provided in an annexed area would include policing, street lighting, and road maintenance. An annexed area would come under PKS zoning ordinances. Development is now controlled by county ordinances and the area comes under planning regulations covering coastal resources.

The following month, readers learn about “the bid by Indian Beach for annexation of the area directly west of Pine Knoll Shores” and the desire that county zoning remain in effect in that area. Immediately, Pine Knoll Shores’ Board of Commissioners go “on record opposing that annexation by Indian Beach” and make a counter claim to the General Assembly, knowing the bid by Indian Beach has “apparently been received favorably by the House.” The issue remains undecided in 1975.

On the other side of Pine Knoll Shores, a road that has been private becomes town property. Myrtle and Gus Wertz in 1958 “…bought 152 acres on the eastern edge of PKS, 95 of which is the golf course and club now and the rest commercial and residential property.…” They turn over the deed to “the eastern loop of the road,” owned by “Gus’s group, Bogue Enterprises.” The town welcomes the addition. Doll and Hammon hope it will contribute to “pulling the Town together into a united community.” 

Susan Phillips provided this 1950's vintage Wertz Realty sign

On another issue, town residents are less ready to accept change. The January 1975 Shore Line reports a study group to consider “pros and cons" of a bridge from the mainland to Pine Knoll Shores.” The name “Bridge Road,” mentioned earlier, reflects A.C. Hall’s city plan, which proposed a bridge from the north end of what is now Pine Knoll Boulevard or McGinnis Point to Morehead City. In accord with the results of a survey, Pine Knoll Shores’ Planning Board supports plans for “a third bridge across the Sound,” but adopts the “majority view…that the bridge should not come into Pine Knoll Shores.” So, momentum for a third bridge between Bogue Banks and Morehead City stalls in 1975.

Another decision against change proves less permanent. Up through mid-1975, Pine Knoll Shores does not have house numbers and enjoys rural route delivery of mail out of Morehead City. In April 1975, Doll and Hammon write:
…there is a push on by Atlantic Beach to bring PKS into their postal area, which would mean a most inconvenient change of address for us as well as a curtailing of services (Atlantic Beach wants what is known as city service and this does not allow for things like buying stamps from the carrier, etc.).
Doll and Hammon go on to say, “…city service represents a radical change.”

Even though a system of house numbers is ready for town approval by August 1975, resistance to becoming part of the Atlantic Beach postal district remains strong, and many continue to use a rural route number instead of their house numbers for mail delivery as long as they can.

A more successful partnership is formed with Atlantic Beach for fire protection. Also, Pine Knoll Shores rather easily moves from having individual resident contracts for garbage collection to a universal collection system under a town contract with Atlantic Sanitation.

A decision to ask the North Carolina Department of Transportation (DOT) to pave Salter Path Road comes with a condition that the road remain two-lane. However, despite lobbying efforts by Pine Knoll Shores’ mayor and commissioners, DOT makes no progress on this project in 1975, beyond a commitment to do the job.

In terms of what is in their control, town commissioners proceed successfully. They pass ordinances on a range of issues such as zoning, parking, signs, noise, traffic, farm animals and pets. 

Other notable events include moving town hall from the Atlantis Lodge to “a small house set far back…on Bridge Road.” The new town hall described here as “a small house” was formerly Alice Hoffman’s kitchen, the same structure Don Brock was forced to abandon as his local office in 1974. 

It is large enough for the town’s small staff but too small for large meetings. So, commissioners continue to meet at the Atlantis Lodge until August 1975, when they begin to hold meetings at other locations around town. 

Also of historical interest is mention in July 1975 that George McNeill (for whom the Roosevelts named McNeill Inlet) is stepping down from Pine Knoll Association (PKA) homeowners’ board. According to Doll and Hammon, he “served for more than eight years, since the whole thing began here in PKS.” Interestingly, in a later 1975 issue of the paper, we learn of the Kirkmans arrival in Pine Knoll Shores. Ken Kirkman will join George McNeill’s law firm while it is still handling most of the local legal work for the Roosevelt family and the town. Kirkman provides legal services for the town many years after George McNeil’s death.

North Carolina history buffs and collectors of vintage license plates may be interested in knowing the first Pine Knoll Shores’ city tag (at the time a requirement for all municipalities in North Carolina) comes into use in 1975. Also in 1975, Hammon and Doll comment on the new motto on the state license plate: “First in Freedom,” chosen at the end of 1974.

Citing the News-Times, they say the primary reason for adopting the slogan was that North Carolinians “couldn’t live under a system of law that didn’t guarantee the very freedom they had fought for in the Revolutionary War, so did not ratify the Constitution until the Bill of Rights had been made forever a permanent part of it.” Doll and Hammon also provide other justifications for the phrase: North Carolina was “the first colony to call a provincial assembly” (1774), the first “to expel its royal governor” (1775) and the first “to authorize…delegates to the Constitutional Congress to vote…for independence” (1776). However, claiming to be “First in Freedom” is controversial given North Carolina’s secession from the union in 1861. (Other sources indicate this motto was dropped from the base plate in 1978 but could be used as late as 1992 with annual registration stickers.) 

For those interested in local history, I recommend the 1975 Shore Line as a good source. In various issues, Hammon and Doll discuss the swing bridge from Atlantic Beach to Morehead City; place names on Bogue Banks that have not been used for over a century—Belcove and Rice Path; the “road” to those places; World War II days on the island, when “there was a patrol riding the beach”; days when Morehead City was known as Shepard’s Point; and the possibility that Arendell and Bridges streets were named for Bridges Arendell, perhaps a spelling variation of Arundell of Arundell Castle in England. Clearly, early Shore Line writers and readers enjoyed learning about the history of this area as much as we do.

Post Author: Phyllis Makuck

Friday, February 15, 2019

Shore Line 1974

There are 235 houses, 122 condominium units, 42 apartments, and, at least, one alligator “surfacing occasionally, sunning himself on the sand” in Brock Basin. 

Photo from by Debbie Morris taken in North Carolina 
but not in Pine Knoll Shores

It’s 1974 in Pine Knoll Shores. The Shore-line newsletter has lost its hyphen and become Pine Knoll Shore Line. High spirits of being a new town and publishing a new paper are still evident, but so are the challenges of both endeavors. At no time does the paper become political or negative, but a statement at the end of the first paragraph of the January issue suggests a theme: “…many voices were heard, many viewpoints aired.”

Mary Doll and Betty Hammon are stillShore Line writers and editors, but Doll is sometimes writing from faraway locations, and other residents begin to submit articles from town and abroad. The 1974 Shore Line also contains a few editorials; they hint at local conflict. 

The year begins with commissioners’ passing a controversial zoning ordinance addressing both the height and density of structures in Pine Knoll Shores. “No building or other structure of any kind shall exceed either five stories or fifty feet in height….” The “density clause” limited “…all structures to no more than ten dwelling units per acre…” and specified additional limits for commercial buildings and off-street parking. 

Pine Knoll Shores is clearly functioning as a governing entity, but it is not until May 1974 that the state recognizes it as an incorporated town. The Shore Line proclaims, “We are a town!” The North Carolina General Assembly “…ratified, confirmed and validated the incorporation election of last August.” We aren’t told exactly what obstacles prevented earlier ratification, but Hammon and Doll do indicate the 1973 local election in favor of incorporation “had recently been contested, and “The battle was over.”

In the same month, the first official club of the new town begins to form with Martha Odell Flynn as its first chairperson. After meeting with a leader of the Garden and Civic Department of the Women’s Club of Morehead City, Flynn and a small group of Pine Knoll Shores women decide to affiliate with the Garden Club of North Carolina, a member of the National Council of State Garden Clubs. In the following month, the group officially becomes the Garden Club of Pine Knoll Shores.

In May,aShore Line has the first “Letter to the Editors,” anonymously attributed to “A Citizen.” It compliments individuals by name for “joining in efforts to work on the many jobs that need doing…” while making a plea for residents to be “less critical and little more willing to lend a hand….” One person named for her “outstanding contribution” is Ruth Bray, a member of the town’s first Board of Commissioners and manager of the Atlantis, which played a notable role in the town’s early history as the location of the first Pine Knoll Shores’ town hall.

Readers also learn in the May issue that Don Brock, a representative of the Roosevelts in Pine Knoll Shores, has left “the building” he was using for an office in Pine Knoll Shores and has moved to a location in Morehead City. This will prove to be a temporary move for Brock. 

Photo from Pine Knoll Shores' town album by Phyllis Makuck.

I was hoping for more information since other historical records document a controversy over the structure’s not being in accord with local covenants. We know a portion of Alice Hoffman’s house served as Brock’s office and was later moved from Yaupon and Salter Path Road to become a temporary town hall. Although there is no confirmation of either detail in the May 1974 Shore Line, the structure in question is probably the same building referenced in this vague passage in the June 1974 issue: “The deed to the Town Hall site has been received from the Roosevelt interests and has been duly recorded, so that, in the near future, the building will be moved to its new spot on Bridge Rd.” (today’s Municipal Circle).

The July newsletter reports on the annual meetings of two homeowner associations: Pine Knoll Association (PKA), the town’s first HOA, and Pine Knoll Shores Corporation (PIKSCO), holding its second annual meeting in 1974. July also marks the beginnings of the Welcome Wagon in town, started by Sycamore Road resident Jeanne Miller. 

In 1974, almost every Shore Line devotes considerable space to introducing newcomers, to the good work of volunteers and to the beauty of the natural environment—to tides, shells, birds, and wildflowers. So, we can feel Mary Doll’s pain when she writes an editorial in September:

Just over a year ago, we became a Town, full of hope and an almost child-like idealism because we saw that we had a beautiful island paradise and a group of clear thinking residents. In this past year our Town has grown; its people have come to know each other better. Differences of opinion have arisen, facades have dropped, irritations have erupted, territories have been threatened. We are still essentially the same group but with our self-awareness sharpened. We ought to be able to stop ourselves, then, from becoming petty and picky as we hang together trying to make our Town hum happily….

Doll continues: 

We all have our one little life to live; it’s not very long either. Do we have time really to study the dark gloomy aspect of everything, dwelling on what seems to us to be the inadequacies of others? Anyway, sometimes those who are the target of complaints are not even aware of it; so then, isn’t it the growler himself who suffers the most, bogged down in his own mumblings? Cheer up, you guys! Go catch a fish or watch a sunset. Let’s keep ourselves channeled and be the rare community where dreams can be accomplished.

Parenthetically, Betty Hammon adds: “This editorial is addressed to each of us who has ever found himself on the other side of a question from his friend and that includes absolutely everyone.” 

Post Author: Phyllis Makuck

Shore-line 1973

 Interest in the early history of Pine Knoll Shores’ monthly newspaper,  originally a newsletter—called Shore-line and, later, Shore-Line, or The Shore-Line—began in 2010 when resident Jack Goldstein donated to the town back issues he and his wife had kept from 1973 to 1985, a valuable collection with very few missing issues. It was then discovered that past editors—including Betty Carr, long-time town employee—had kept back newsletters in notebooks. Putting together what was in the notebooks with what the Goldsteins had donated provided a complete set of newsletters from 1973 to 2002, when publication temporarily ceased. 

In 2004, with the support of newly-elected Mayor Joan Lamson, Bill White revived the town’s monthly publication, converting The Shore-Line newsletter into The Shoreline newspaper. About a decade later, members of the town’s History Committee and past Shoreline editors organized a collection of back papers so the town would have a complete archive from 1973 to the present, except for brief periods when the newsletter was not published. 

Thanks to efforts of the History Committee, that archive is now easily accessible at “Shore-line 1973” is the first in a series of articles attempting to provide highlights from the archive.

The Shoreline story begins in May 1973, when Betty Hammon and Mary Doll write a one-page letter to fellow Pine Knoll Shores’ residents about the importance of having a regularly published “newsletter” for neighbors to get to know one another and stay in touch with what is happening locally. Those receiving the letter respond positively to it.

Photo by Susan Phillips of the beginning of Hammon and Doll's letter

Three months later, Hammon and Doll produce the first official edition of Pine Knoll Shore-line—a two-page 9”x14” single-spaced, mimeographed newsletter. By the second edition, with a fully volunteer staff, they figure an annual subscription fee of $2.00 will cover their minimal costs.

The publication of Doll and Hammon’s newsletter coincides with a vote for Pine Knoll Shores to become an incorporated town. The August 1973 letter reports 90% of eligible voters took part in making the decision: 120 were for incorporation and 26 were against it. The newsletter then goes on to introduce the town’s first mayor, Jim Redfield, and first commissioners—Jim Ramsey, Ruth Bray, Bill Doll, Waightsel Hicks and H.W. McBride, winners of a 16-candidate race. Shore-line writers proudly conclude: “The newly elected commissioners come from varied backgrounds and from all corners and shores of PKS.” (Of course, in 1973, nothing much was developed west of Pine Knoll Blvd.)  

Back Row: James Ramsey, William Doll,  Waightsel Hicks, H.W. McBride  
Front Row: James Redfield (Mayor), Ruth Bray, Simon Bezuyen. Photo by Susan Phillips  from town hall collection. 

Presenting information on the Board of Commissioners and town governance establishes a pattern that future issues will follow. In fact, in 1973, Doll and Hammon, without intending to do so, almost create a template of Shoreline topics. The newsletters do not look at all like the current Shoreline, having minimal formatting with no bold titles for articles and no photographs; however, the typewritten pages cover many subjects current issues regularly feature. 

For example, they dedicate a section to Pine Knoll Shores’ Golf and Country Club. Stan Brunt, Club Manager at the time, announces: “…there are still a few memberships open. Current initiation fees are $300 until the membership reaches 400 members or September 1, 1973, whichever is first. At that time, the fee will increase to $600 until 450 members are reached. Then the fee goes up to $1000—and so on, up, up, up until the membership is closed at 600.” As this passage suggests, 1973 Shore-lines are striking for how familiar the topics are and, sometimes, frightening for how familiar the problems are. 

Celebrating volunteerism as one of the town’s great strengths is another consistent topic. The very first newsletter sets the tone:

Dedication is a big word in Pine Knoll Shores these days. One of those dedicated, probably with the biggest capital “D” . . . is Si Bezuyen, a recently retired accountant…. Si was persuaded to dive into the task of getting all the tax records from the county into tax books of our own. For several days relays of volunteers gathered at Si and Minnie’s house to copy numbers out of one book into another. This ambitious group saved the new town a large hunk of money, and apparently had some happy ‘getting to know you’ hours besides. 

That last statement suggests another common Shoreline theme—namely, getting to know neighbors. The remainder of the first issue introduces seven new town residents, celebrating their achievements and regional diversity—something most subsequent issues from 1973 to the present continue to do even though getting to know neighbors becomes much more difficult as the population increases.

Other familiar topics in 1973 papers include two important resources that do not exist in Pine Knoll Shores at the time—a marine resource center and a library. Having a local library is not yet even a dream, but the September 1973 newsletter says: 

Lots of us in Pine Knoll Shores are avid readers…. Once a month on Wednesday morning from 10:15-11:15 the bookmobile comes to Pine Knoll Shores with Mrs. Clarice Willis in charge… It stops in front of the Murrills’ home on Yaupon near Oakleaf, and you will see us streaming in from all directions by car, bicycle, or on foot. …. The collection is small but active, and you may borrow as many books as you wish. We make them stretch even further by lending them all round the neighborhood.

The December 1973 newsletter quotes from a presentation to the Board of Commissioners on building a marine resource center, which is expected to “attract many tourists. A Marine Center of this kind is used for educational purposes for both adults and children, serving as a sort of laboratory for the marine ecology of the area.” Though what the town now has is an aquarium and not a marine center, the quoted passage is a fairly accurate description of the value of this resource, and there is also a sense that whatever is built at the site will have room to grow. Douglas Young, who makes the slide presentation, thinks the marine center in Pine Knoll Shores will be “…the largest on the Eastern seaboard. It has the most potential because it has 350 acres of unspoiled terrain surrounding it.” At least, the latter part of that claim will prove true.

Plans for Marine Center scanned from PKS Archive by Susan Phillips

The idea of introducing town subdivisions begins in December 1973 with news about Reefstone: 
. . . a tucked away set of condominiums in PKS between the Salter Path Road and the golf course boasts the only fresh water fishing lake around (and there’s a resident wild goose, too!). By the spring of 1975 Reefstone will have about 80 completed units of one, two and three bedroom ‘garden houses’…. Builders have avoided destroying the landscape, and yaupon, cedar, holly, and water oak are flourishing in the very natural surroundings. 

A sense of pride in preserving the maritime forest is apparent in the above passage, and in keeping with this consistent theme, newsletter writers announce that Pine Knoll Shores has been declared a bird sanctuary. 

Other familiar topics in 1973 Shore-lines include: the problem of speeding in canals; concerns about parking, waterway debris and beach erosion; explanations of town ordinances; and news about the police department, with information about how best to contact Public Safety in case of an emergency. 

The first fishing report appears in October 1973, as do notices of upcoming cultural events, including drama in New Bern. The first restaurant review appears in December 1973 along with news of Beaufort historical restoration efforts and activities at the Carteret Historical Research Association. An interest in town history is also apparent with mention of a News-Times series on Alice Hoffman. 1973 topics could come from any one of this year’s Shoreline despite all the changes that have taken place.

How grateful we are to Betty Hammon and Mary Doll for starting this newsletter. Unfortunately, they don’t tell us about themselves, but do mention Carl Hammon as President of Pine Knoll Association (PKA) Board of Directors and Bill Doll as one of the town’s first commissioners. No further information is provided about the Hammons, but there are some further details about the Dolls. Bill Doll is described as being 47 years old and as having moved to Pine Knoll Shores, with Mary, in January 1973, from Sheboygan, Wisconsin. They have a son, Jon, and daughter, Julie, both living in Seattle at the time. 

Betty Hammon and Mary Doll, like everyone else living in Pine Knoll Shores at the time and for years to come, are originally from somewhere else, but they are determined to make this their home. Establishing the Shore-line newsletter helps do just that and more. It makes the town a community and gives it a recorded history.

Post Author: Phyllis Makuck

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Mayor Ken Hanan: 1985-1991

 The following represents the fourth in a series of posts on the early mayors of Pine Knoll Shores. Most of the information and quotes, unless otherwise indicated, come from back Shore Line issues available on PKS History Committee member Susan Phillips provided supplementary information from town records and an Internet search.

Ken Hanan

After agreeing to serve when Mayor Wayne Cleveland died, Ken Haller resigned in February 1985, so commissioners once again needed to select a mayor to serve the remaining months of Wayne Cleveland’s term. On March 12, 1985, they selected Commissioner Ken Hanan. In December 1986, they re-appointed Hanan as mayor for a full term. He would serve three full terms.

Town Clerk Corrine Geer shakes hands with newly sworn-in Mayor Ken Hanan. Susan Phillips took this photo from a Pine Knoll Shores album in town hall.

Hanan’s public service in Pine Knoll Shores had begun in November 1983, when he was elected to the Board of Commissioners. He was sworn in early when Commissioner Bill Dixson resigned. 

When Ken Hanan became mayor in 1985, he was 63 years old. The Shore Line provided the following biographical information:
Ken and his wife, Yola, moved to Pine Knoll shores from Chatham, N.J., in March of 1982. Hanan retired after 15 years as editor of a trade publication of heavy industry and spent 25 years previous to that in the heavy construction industry. He holds a degree in civil engineering from the University of Michigan. Hanan is a valued member of the Rescue Squad.  

Ken Hanan with the town’s new ambulance. 
Photo by Susan Phillips from Volunteer Rescue Squad album.

Ken and Yola moved to 111 Beechwood Drive in 1982, but the Hanans were not new to the area. In 1972, after reading about Pine Knoll Shores in the Wall Street Journal, they made their first visit and bought a lot with the intention of retiring here. Between 1972 and 1982, they made over 30 trips to Bogue Banks.

A June1982 Shore Line profile of new neighbors stated: “Ken plays the piano, likes sailing, canoeing, fishing and gardening. He also had an interest in antique cars....” Both Ken and Yola enjoyed square dancing.

Yola serving punch to Roland children at the town’s Christmas party. Ken by her side.
Photo by Susan Phillips from town album.

The Hanans’ spirit of volunteerism became evident the first year they moved to Pine Knoll Shores. Yola, a former first-grade teacher, became a member of the Garden Club, serving a term as corresponding secretary and later, as a hospitality committee member. She also wrote articles for The Shore Line, introducing new neighbors. Ken not only volunteered as an ambulance driver for the Rescue Squad but also offered his civil engineering and heavy construction background to help assess the town’s roads.

Before becoming mayor, Ken Hanan served as commissioner of public works, recommended and oversaw the resurfacing of streets and installation of “high-intensity” streetlights. No public safety problem was too small. When he realized the steps leading up to town hall got slippery when wet, he experimented with grit in paint to provide traction and, then, decided to use skid-resistant tape. 

He also took on big issues as a commissioner that he later pursued as mayor. For example, in 1984, he became involved in renewed efforts for a third bridge between Bogue Banks and Morehead City. He objected to a proposal that would have the bridge enter the island near McGinnis Point, but recognizing the safety benefits of having a third bridge, opted for a plan that would have the bridge reach the island west of Salter Path in Indian Beach—a plan the state approved in 1985. However, neither bridge proposal was destined to succeed.

Another nagging issue Hanan dealt with both as commissioner and, later, throughout all his years as mayor, was the problem of street flooding in eastern Pine Knoll Shores. Unfortunately, a solution was as illusive as the third bridge. Mayor Hanan went to Raleigh to discuss drainage issues with the Department of Transportation, contacted CAMA, and hired Von Ossen & Associates from Wilmington to consider possible solutions. Two favored recommendations included limiting impervious surface maximums to 25% and constructing swales. 

Determined to solve the flooding problem in his last term as mayor, Hanan signed off on a Von Ossen drainage plan even though Pine Knoll Association (PKA) opposed it. Finally, in response to continued opposition to swales and to fears drainage would damage canal and sound water quality, Mayor Hanan authorized a local study group. The study group opposed swales and drainage into the canal and, instead, proposed “storm water be piped under Salter Path Road onto oceanfront dunes....” He then authorized a new Von Ossen study, which proposed also using a water canon for areas the pipe would not drain. It would shoot water to the ocean. PIKSCO homeowner association opposed the oceanfront pipe and cannon proposals. In the end, Mayor Hanan could implement nothing to prevent streets from flooding.  

As a leader, Hanan seemed willing to risk action and equally willing to reverse direction if it failed. He supported spraying Orthane to control the “tussock” moths infesting hardwoods throughout town. However, after spending over $7,000 on spraying with minimal success since it rained heavily immediately after the town’s first spraying effort, Mayor Hanan recommended the problem be left in the hands of homeowners.

In April 1985, he made a premature announcement of a U.S. Post Office plan for “contract postal service in Pine Knoll Shores.” It entailed “a small branch of the Morehead City Post Office” to be located in Pine Knoll Shores. Neither the town’s rural route number nor the 28557 zip code would change, but Mayor Hanan thought space in a local “store” could be rented out for local postal boxes. The hope was that “store” would be in the new town center, which, after much opposition, had finally been approved in Ken Haller’s last days as mayor. Neither the town’s shopping center nor its branch post office would ever become a reality. 

However, over four years later, in January 1990, Mayor Hanan announced a plan for a new post office in Atlantic Beach. Pine Knoll Shores was to switch to the new post office and start using street addresses with the new Atlantic Beach zip code, eliminating almost one thousand rural boxes for RFD mail delivery. As with most changes in town, not everyone welcomed this one, but it was implemented. The new post office opened during Mayor Hanan’s last term—October 20, 1990.

In May 1985, a new referendum for Liquor by the Drink with strong support from the town’s motel owners was on the table again after having been defeated earlier. Mayor Hanan called a public hearing on the matter in June. The referendum was held August 27, 1985, and passed with a two to one majority.

A recycling effort began with Mayor Hanan’s strong support. It started as a modest proposal, asking residents to save newspapers and aluminum cans. Shore Line issues would notify readers of dates, times and locations in Morehead City where they could periodically bring these items. A few months later, glass was added as a recyclable. By 1989, a recycling transfer site was located in Pine Knoll Shores. Residents could bring items once a month, but the transfer site became too messy, and the popular Amory drop-off location in Morehead City was eliminated. Later that year, Mayor Hanan formed a committee to study how the town might handle its own recycling program. The first recommendation was a “recycling drop-off site at Salter Path and Oakleaf” open daily. Shortly before leaving office, Mayor Hanan announced the town’s recycling site would move to the town hall parking lot.

Though not entirely conflict free, Hanan’s six-plus years in office seemed considerably less stressful than earlier years as a result, probably, of both the town’s maturity and Mayor Hanan’s governing style. Growth, which continued at a steady pace, seemed to occur without major opposition. In adherence with established ordinances and under the watchful eye of the Community Appearance Commission, building permits were granted and lots were cleared. Each Shore Line
issue welcomed new neighbors. New subdivisions, such as those at Beacon’s Reach, formed without open debate. One exception was a proposed change in a zoning ordinance that would increase the allowable height of buildings, but even that seemed to be resolved with little open hostility.

However, Hanan’s terms were not without disruptive rumors—such as one about the library’s intention to move from the aquarium to town hall. But, no sooner did concerns rise as to the lack of available space than rumors were put to rest. And, a few months later when the aquarium did announce that the library would have to move, Hanan put together a town committee headed by Emily White, his former mayor pro-tem, to find a suitable location on Bogue Banks. With wide support, the decision was for the library to locate in Pine Knoll Shores. Immediately Bogue Banks Friends of the Library went into high gear and raised $18,000 for furnishings. Mayor Hanan provided strong support, encouraging more donations to meet an ambitious $40,000 goal. The move from the aquarium to the new Pine Knoll Shores location took place in April 1990.

During Mayor Hanan’s first term in office, clearing had begun for the long-disputed town center though little actual building had taken place as a result not of local opposition but of an economic downturn and disheartened commercial investors. So, in February 1988, the Planning Board, without opposition, approved plans to change zoning of some of the commercial area to residential and create 19 single-family lots on cleared land behind the Salter Path Road Commercial site. The remaining Salter Path site would, in 1989, come to be called Pine Knoll Village Professional Center. In 1990, it included the library, a bank, a real-estate agency, a law firm, a doctor’s office, and a beauty shop.

Over the years, Mayor Hanan continued to focus considerable attention on issues of safety—overseeing the purchase of a new fire engine, organizing hurricane/civil preparedness sessions, guiding implementation of a 911 system to include Pine Knoll Shores, stressing the need for visible house numbers to facilitate rescue squad efforts. He also served as chair of the Bogue Banks Control, a group of mayors who met to decide when a state of emergency had to be declared, as it was in the fall of 1989 when Hurricane Hugo threatened the east coast.

Mayor Hanan represented the town not only on county but also on state levels. He explained how the town was responsible for maintaining maritime forest in land from Pine Knoll Boulevard to Beacon’s Reach when the state Department of Administration planned to assume control. He negotiated an Army Corps of Engineers plan to pump dredged sand to 1,000 yards of beach in eastern Pine Knoll Shores.  

A minor conflict emerged when some Pine Knoll Shores residents wanted to keep Salter Path commercial fishermen from net fishing along Pine Knoll Shores’ beach in the fall. Mayor Hanan met with local fishermen and with Marine Fisheries. According to the September 1989 Shore Line— 
It was agreed that fishermen will respect residents’ beach rights and residents should be aware that fishermen have a legal right to beach access. Those commercial fishermen using the beach will be issued a use permit. Net fishing will start immediately and not end until December.

Unhappiness with Carolina Water Service was another regular issue during Hanan’s administration. Rate increases would result in written resolutions and public hearings, planting seeds for a change that would occur many years later. 

May 1991, Mayor Hanan swears in Robert Gallo as commissioner to fill the term of Aubrey Johnson after commissioners voted to appoint him. Photo by Susan Phillips from town album.

Interestingly, Hanan was the mayor who first entertained the possibility of hiring a town administrator. Toward that end, he invited a speaker from the League of Municipalities to discuss various forms of town governance.

In December 1991, Mayor Ken Hanan stepped down. At the end of his administration, the town looked very much like contemporary Pine Knoll Shores although town-management governance did not become a reality until 2007. 

At the annual Christmas open house on December 21, 1991, the town expressed gratitude for Ken Hanan’s many years of service. He also rode proudly with the rescue squad in that year’s Christmas parade.

Like Ken Haller, Ken Hanan dedicated time after his years of service to contributing to the town’s historical record. He worked with Art Browne and Mary Korff, former editor of The Shore Line, on The Story of Pine Knoll Shoresand compiled Pine Knoll Shores, 1959 to 1993, a Chronological History—both of which were presented to the Board of Commissioners on October 12, 1993. Copies of the Story were sold for one dollar, and two bound copies of the Chronology were given to the town. In December of that year, Ken Hanan presented Bogue Banks Library with another copy of the Chronology.

Also in 1993, Ken Hanan supported the candidacy of A.C. Hall for Carteret County Commissioner. Hanan introduced Hall, who had designed the canal section of Pine Knoll Shores, at a Democratic Party Precinct meeting.

Ken and Yola Hanan left Pine Knoll Shores in 1995 and moved to Brevard, North Carolina. To honor them, the Garden Club purchased a gardening book for the Bogue Banks Library in their names. The year before, on May 15, 1994, they had attended the Garden Club’s 20tthAnniversary celebration, and five years later, Ken Hanan spoke at the club’s silver anniversary. Also, from Garden Club records, we know Yola Hanan returned to Pine Knoll Shores at least once because she was a guest at a meeting on June 11, 1997.

On September 3, 2009, Ken Hanan died at the age of 87. Yola lived for less than two additional years, dying at the age of 95 on July 8, 2011. As individuals who always believed in giving back to the communities where they resided, the Hanans also have a lasting legacy in Brevard, where they donated generously to Brevard College in support of the arts.

Post Author: Phyllis Makuck with the assistance of Susan Phillips