ROANOKE ISLAND The Lost Colony
By: Bradley Patton
The first English-speaking colonists in America arrived by ship at Roanoke Island in 1584.They were sent by The Queen of England to find new land.Roanoke Island is located off the coast of North Carolina now known as The Outer Banks.This was approximately 23 years before Jamestown was settled.
The First Trip
More than 100 men built an England fort and settlement on the north end of the island. They left the following year because of bad weather,lack of supplies,and poor relations with the Native Americans.The colonist and natives didn't get along even though they took the two local chiefs, to England hoping to form good relations.
The Second Trip
In 1587 another 117 colonists including women and children, arrived at Roanoke Island. On August 18th Eleanor Dare gave birth to the first English-speaking child in the New World,Virginia Dare.A week later,the baby's grandfather Capt. John White was forced to return to England for badly needed supplies.Spain was attacking England so White could not return for 3 years.When he returned in 1590 there was no sign of his granddaughter or any other colonists.Their homes were gone and the only sign of human presence were the letters "Cro" scratched into a tree trunk and "Croatoan" carved into a wooden post. Some people thought that the colonists had tried to get help from the Croatoan Indians on Croatoan Island but they weren't there. Croatoan was the name of an island south of Roanoke island that was home to a Native American tribe of the same name. Croatoan Island is now Hatteras Island.
- Were the colonists killed by Native Americans?
- Did they try to sail back to England on their own and not find their way back?
- Did they die of disease?
What happened to the lost colonists is still a mystery today.