When the Bodie Island Lighthouse was completed in 1871 there was only one stretch of the eastern US coastline that remained dark—a condition the US Lighthouse Board noted in its 1871 report.
“With the completion of the light house at Body’s Island (Bodie Island) there will remain only one important interval of unlighted coast on the Atlantic from . . . Maine to . . . Florida. That dark space will be embraced between Cape Henry and Body’s Island, a distance of eighty miles and an unlighted space of forty miles, at the center of which there should be a first-order (Fresnel) Light . . . It is now believed that the construction of this tower should be no longer delayed.” Congress agreed, and in 1873 appropriated $50,000 to begin construction. When completed two years later, the new Currituck Beach Lighthouse cost $178,000, approximately $3.9 million in modern dollars.