Not soon forgotten, that Ghostly Hornpipe

In addition to classic literature and Greek mythology, we are going to cover folklore, legends, and stories from some of the world’s cultures. I had the opportunity while living in North Carolina some years ago, to visit the outer banks. In one of the little hotels I stayed at, near the front desk, were small books about a quarter page large, that caught my eyes. Written by a Prior Judge Charles Whedbee, these were books containing collections of the folklore from the outer banks. There are ghost stories, pirate stories, and local legends. This story comes from his collection entitled ‘Pirates, Ghosts, and Coastal Lore‘.

I want to share one of these with you today, and more in the future. The author himself has quite the story, but I’ll save that for another time. Let us go back a ways to when we were using what are now called tall ships but were once just called ships. In this case a couple of fishing schooners.


We will go to a town called Portsmouth, only a ghost town these days though.


Getting there will be through a tricky inlet called the Ocracoke inlet.

Ocracoke Inlet

It was a hazardous opening for ships to sail through but was in constant change of its sandbars, and so needed local experts to guide the larger, less frequenting ships in. At the last, our sailors will leave us with a dance called the Hornpipe, which has been a tradition of sailors for ages and ages.


Let’s join them now…

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