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British cemetery.

British Cemetery on U.S. Soil

Field review by the editors.

Buxton, North Carolina

This is smaller and less fancy than British Cemetery #1 on nearby Ocracoke Island, but you don't need a ferry to get to this cemetery.

In April 1942, a British tanker carrying airplane fuel off of Cape Hatteras took seven torpedoes from a lurking German U-boat. Nearly half of the crew drowned, and two of them later washed up on the beach. They were buried here, in a mini-cemetery fenced off from what had been a larger burial ground. Although both this boneyard and the one in Ocracoke are in North Carolina, they're technically British territory.

Every year, on the Thursday and Friday closest to May 11th (the day that ship carrying the Ocracoke's victims was sunk), a ceremony is held at both cemeteries, attended by representatives from Britain and, sometimes, Germany.

British Cemetery on U.S. Soil

Lighthouse Rd, Buxton, NC
US 64 east to the ocean at Nags Head, then 48 miles south on Hwy 12. Follow signs for Cape Hatteras Lighthouse. Drive past the lighthouse parking lot on Lighthouse Rd, which then curves to the left. Once the road straightens you'll see a little brown sign and pull-off on the right; a trail leads back to the tiny fenced-in grave plot.
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In the region:
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