On this day in 1879: Winds of 135 mph and tides 4 feet above normal hit the North Carolina coast. “Beaufort and Morehead City are classed as ruined . . . completely wrecked,” reports the Raleigh Daily News.
Only two lives are lost, both in rescue attempts, but the storm destroys Beaufort’s landmark three-story Atlantic Hotel. Among guests whose belongings are swept away: Gov. Thomas Jarvis, who returns to Raleigh two days later wearing a sailor suit.