Stick, by the way, was not a native North Carolinian, but you can't tell that from his writing. He came to us as a boy from New Jersey, and served as a combat correspondent in World War II in the Marines along the way. But he was otherwise as thoroughly North Carolinian as it's possible to be.
When I read of his death Sunday at age 89 it saddened me to know that such a productive historian and folklorist of the N.C. coast had passed away. His 11 books are a living memorial to the depth and breadth of his knowledge. He wrote among other things "Graveyard of the Atlantic" (1952), "The Outer Banks of North Carolina" (1958), "The Ash Wednesday Storm" (1987), "Roanoke Island: The Beginnings of English America" (1983) and edited my favorite, "An Outer Banks Reader" (1998). The latter is a marvelous compendium of other folks' writings about the Banks, from early explorers to contemporary times. Writers include Rachel Carson, who did groundbreaking environmental work in the marshes near Beaufort, John Dos Passos, who wrote about “The Campers at Kitty Hawk” named Wilbur and Orville, and Observer writer Elizabeth Leland's piece "The Crab Picker" from her own book "Our Vanishing Coast" in 1992.
The summer reading season is upon us and there are a lot of good books to read, but if you haven't read David Stick in a while, or ever, you can't go wrong with “An Outer Banks Reader.”
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
More on David Stick
We referenced the passing of author David Stick in our "Quick hits" this a.m. The Charlotte Observer's Jack Betts has more here. Here's a snippet: