The Cottage Mower

Photograph by Daniel Schwen, courtesy of a GNU Free Documentation License, Wikimedia Commons.

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The Cottage Mower

by Bland Simpson
Southern Cultures, Vol. 16, No. 1: Spring 2010

"Over on Roanoke Island, any number of homes in Manteo now stand on foundations they were not built upon, thanks to this man's work. There was nothing he couldn't move—why, I believe he once moved a small hotel!"

Fifty or sixty years ago, my second cousin once-removed’s uncle by marriage, Uncle John Ferebee, was a legendary cottage-mover on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. He specialized in sliding cottages westward, back away from the encroaching ocean, though he also moved them north and south up and down the beach. Over on Roanoke Island, any number of homes in Manteo now stand on foundations they were not built upon, thanks to this man’s work. There was nothing he couldn’t move—why, I believe he once moved a small hotel!

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