Breaking News
More () »

How a woman on the Outer Banks saved Jockey's Ridge from being developed into condos

In 1974, Jockey’s Ridge was declared a “National Natural Landmark." It's all thanks to Carolista Baum.

NAGS HEAD, N.C. — It was the month of August in 1973, and a bulldozer rumbled into place, preparing to level Jockey's Ridge, the tallest living sand dune system on the Atlantic coast.Jockey's Ridge

At that time, developers wanted to replace the Outer Banks landmark with a row of condos.

But Carolista Baum was standing in their way.   

Baum made it clear she wasn’t moving, and when the operator left in frustration, she swiped the bulldozer’s distributor cap to make sure it wouldn't move either.  

Baum didn't stop there.   

She founded a group advocating for the dune's preservation and drove to Raleigh every day for three weeks to petition lawmakers.  

Fortunately, all of that hard work paid off.  

In 1974, Jockey’s Ridge was declared a “National Natural Landmark."  

And in 1975, the lawmakers approved funds to create “Jockey’s Ridge State Park," preserving the landmark for generations to come.  

All thanks to the one woman who stood her ground. 

This is part of a series of Women's History Month stories 13News Now is featuring in March to celebrate some of the women who have had an impact on the Hampton Roads region.


Before You Leave, Check This Out