The Legend of Theodosia Burr

The Outer Banks is home to a long and exciting past of dramatic historic events. Some of these events have been carried on in the form of ghost stories. One such story is the legend of Theodosia Burr, daughter of the infamous man who killed Alexander Hamilton in a duel. 

As a young boy, Alexander Hamilton wrecked off the coast of Hattreras Island. He always remembered this event and when he became a predominant politician in the United States, helped commision the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse. During this time, the lighthouse was known as “Hamilton’s Light” and had red stripes instead of black. The new lighthouse was a welcomed addition for Outer Banks locals and mariners alike. 

The Outer Banks is home to a long and exciting past of dramatic historic events.  Some of these events have been carried on in the form of ghost stories. One such story is the legend of Theodosia Burr, daughter of the infamous man who killed Alexandar Hamilton in a duel.
As a young boy, Alexander Hamilton wrecked off the coast of Hatteras Island.  He always rememebered this event and when he became a predominant politician in the United States, helped commision the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse. During his time, the lighthouse was known as “Hamilton’s Light” and had red stripes instead of black.  The new lighthouse was a welcomed addition for Outer Banks locals and mariners alike. 
Soon after, Alexander Hamilton, the Secretary of the Treasury, and Aaron Burr, Vice President of the United States, had a great political battle which resulted in court proceedings, political strife and eventually an infamous dual. This resulted in the death of Alexander Hamilton. 
Although the dual occurred hundreds of miles away, Outer Banks natives heard about the great dual and threatened Aaron Burr’s life. It is told that the sea itself would take revenge on Burr. The Outer Banks is home to a long and exciting past of dramatic historic events.  Some of these events have been carried on in the form of ghost stories. One such story is the legend of Theodosia Burr, daughter of the infamous man who killed Alexandar Hamilton in a duel.As a young boy, Alexander Hamilton wrecked off the coast of Hatteras Island.  He always rememebered this event and when he became a predominant politician in the United States, helped commision the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse. During his time, the lighthouse was known as “Hamilton’s Light” and had red stripes instead of black. The new lighthouse was a welcomed addition for Outer Banks locals and mariners alike. Soon after, Alexander Hamilton, the Secretary of the Treasury, and Aaron Burr, Vice President of the United States, had a great political battle which resulted in court proceedings, political strife and eventually an infamous dual. This resulted in the death of Alexander Hamilton. 

Although the dual occurred hundreds of miles away, Outer Banks natives heard about the great dual and threatened Aaron Burr’s life. It is told that the sea itself would take revenge on Burr. 

Aaron Burr may have been the threat’s target, but his daughter, Theodosia Burr felt it’s effects. Traveling from South Carolina to New York to visit her father, her ship was attacked and wrecked by Nags Head land pirates. The event drove Theodosia Burr insane. She seemed to lose touch with her previous self and only kept a portrait of herself as a momento to her past. 

In an attempt to help Theodosia, the Outer Banks locals attempted to take the picture from Theodosia to bring her back to reality. They succeeded in retrieving the portrait, which unintentionally caused Theodosia Burr to run into the sea. She was never been seen again and her body was never found.. 

Although the threat was towards Aaron Burr, Theodosia Burr paid the price for her father. 

Check out this video to learn more about Outer Banks history and this great ghost story! Thank you to Kevin McLeod for the music as well as the National Park Service and Wikicommons for the images!

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