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Oak Island

4.1
Beaches · Lighthouses · Gift & Specialty Shops
Oak Island is a seaside town located mostly on the barrier island of Oak Island (which also contains the town of Caswell Beach), in Brunswick County, North Carolina, United States. The town extends onto the mainland north of the island's bridge. The population was 6,783 at the 2010 census. It was founded in 1999 by the consolidation of the towns of Long Beach and Yaupon Beach. Its main industry is tourism; the town has an average summer population of 30-50,000.Oak Island is part of the Myrtle Beach metropolitan area.HistoryThe island has been inhabited since the early 19th century; Fort Caswell was built on its eastern end in 1838. The remainder of the island was developed beginning in the late 1930s, attracting people from nearby Southport. Fox hunting was popular in the northern area near the Intracoastal Waterway. The island was nearly wiped out by Hurricane Hazel in 1954; only five buildings were left standing on Long Beach in the hurricane's wake. The island quickly recovered, and the towns of Long Beach and Yaupon Beach were incorporated in 1955. Other hurricanes, such as Diana in 1984, Bertha and Fran in 1996 and Floyd in 1999, have caused damage to the island, nearly as catastrophic as that of Hazel.
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