Welcome to the Ocracoke Preservation Society's (OPS) website. Bookmark our page so we are easy to find. The Ocracoke Preservation Society is a non-profit, community-based organization dedicated to the preservation of Ocracoke Island's rich historical and cultural heritage.
Our gift shop is available online, and donations can be made through our online gift shop as well (we also accept donations via mail, phone and email). Thank you!
Founded in 1983, OPS has maintained a free admission museum at the century-old David Williams House since 1992. This traditional two-story house was built around the year 1900. Its owner, David Williams, was the first Chief of the U.S. Coast Guard station on Ocracoke. The house is a contributing structure in the Ocracoke Historic District. In 1989, it was moved to its present location on National Park Service property to prevent its demolition and was subsequently restored.
We first opened our doors to the public in June of 1992. The ground floor rooms have been converted to serve as our museum, and the second floor contains a research library and administrative offices. The house and surrounding Ocracoke Historic District property are on the National Register of Historic Places.
In 2006, an original Ocracoke cistern was donated to us and is now on display in our yard. We have also acquired the 1934 fishing vessel, "Blanche", locally built and operated. This boat has been restored in our back yard and is a featured exhibit.
The OPS museum is open from Easter to Thanksgiving each year. OPS helps support the Ocracoke ponies, the Ocrafolk Opry and Ocrafolk Festival, and provides funding for recordings of traditional local music. In the summer, we host talks about local historic subjects on our back porch.
How You Can Help
As with any historical museum, we are always interested in expanding our collection of artifacts. If you have photographs, documents or items from Ocracoke's past that you would be willing to share, please contact us.
We are always looking for new and returning volunteers at OPS. Whether it be in the Gift Shop, helping with collections, special projects or special events, please inquire directly at the OPS Museum or contact us if you would like to become a more active member of the community striving to preserve Ocracoke.