European settlers came to Hatteras Island in the 1700s with people primarily of English descent moving there from colonies in mainland North Carolina and Virginia.
The first land grant established on Hatteras Island was granted in 1711 in Kinnakeet, modern day Avon. During the colonial period the island was part of Hyde County and referred to as the Hatteras Sand Banks, which was divided into multiple sections: Chicamacomico Banks, Kinnakeet Banks, and Cape Hatteras Banks. (Painting of the Hatteras Island landscape by Dixie Browning.)