Can you imagine...

Waiting on the shoreline for the boat that will deliver your mail, the lumber to build your home, and the new principal for the school in your village?

Traveling by boat to visit your cousins and see a motion picture show?

Sailing in a skiff to the nearest doctor after you broke your leg? 

Living on the coast of North Carolina when there were no paved roads or bridges?

Boats were The lifeline.

Everything was delivered by boat. Teachers, preachers, and dentists. Musicians, deputies, and doctors. Chickens, mail, tools, and nails. News from around the world and from the next village down. Boats delivered more than freight and passengers - they were key in transferring ideas and connecting people and communities. 

Port light brings to life the stories of these boats.

Port Light shares stories from the heyday of boat traffic across the sounds, when villages and towns were looking brightly towards a better and more prosperous future. This growth and development spurred by the maritime connections led to public projects, roads and the bridges, that ultimately led to boats becoming less depended upon. Port Light captures this lost history. 


Join the Conversation ON Twitter

Use #portlightnc to engage with users, educators, students, and those who lived the stories of Port Light. 


Interactive Route Map 


For Teachers 

Port Light has been designed as an online resource for classroom use. Lessons written specific for the North Carolina 8th grade social studies curriculum can be used in whole, in part, or adapted for other grade levels.