Ocracoke Working Watermen’s Exhibit
In 2006, the watermen on Ocracoke Island banded together to save their livelihood. The island’s last fish house had been put up for sale, which meant there was no access to bulk ice and no place to unload and sell their catch. The watermen faced a certain end. The Ocracoke Working Watermen’s Exhibit tells the story of their past, their present, and how, in 2006, they worked together to assure their future.
Located in the former Will Willis Store & Fish House, a National Register Historic Structure, the exhibit combines videos, printed materials, classes, and special events to educate the public and raise awareness of the need to preserve Ocracoke Island’s 300-year-old maritime culture, the role that watermen play in maintaining our “quaint fishing village atmosphere,” and the interdependence between a healthy environment, community, and the local economy.