With treacherous currents caused by the collision of the Gulf Stream and the Virginia Drift, and the 12-mile sandbar Diamond Shoals, Cape Hatteras has earned the title “Graveyard of the Atlantic.”
To mitigate the danger, the U.S. government built the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse, which was first lighted in 1803. The tower was 90 feet tall and made of sandstone. A second tower replaced it in 1870 after complaints that the original light was difficult to see and that the signal was not strong enough to reach mariners.
In 1999 Cape Hatteras Lighthouse was moved inland about 2,900 feet because of erosion.
This video by NOAA Sanctuaries has more about the lighthouse:
Cape Hatteras Lighthouse is on Hatteras Island in the Outer Banks in Buxton, North Carolina, and is part of the Cape Hatteras National Seashore, a 70-mile stretch that preserves a portion of the Outer Banks from Bodie Island to Ocracoke Island. It is the tallest brick lighthouse in the world.