Roanoke settlement

Discussion in 'History Talk' started by Sasquatch, Nov 4, 2010.

  1. Sasquatch

    Sasquatch New Member

    Does anyone else find the issue of Roanoke settlement to be as fascinating as I do. The settlers came here and established a colony there. Then some of the men under the leadership of Sir Richard Grenville, returned to England for supplies and came back to find all of the settler's gone and the word "Croatan" carved into a nearby tree. Their whereabouts are still unknown.
  2. TheReaper

    TheReaper New Member

    That has something to do with an Indian tribe, right? The question seems to be, did the settlers go with the Indians? And why did they carve the tribe name in a tree?
  3. Sylvia

    Sylvia New Member

    Myrddin likes this.
  4. Sasquatch

    Sasquatch New Member

    Not necessarily TheReaper. There have been several suppositions over the years from the Native Americans absorbing them into their tribes to thoughts that they could have been wiped out by disease. But if they were wiped out by disease there was no evidence of new graves and no one left when the others returned that could have buried them. There is still speculation about what happened.
  5. I always supported the absorption theory. Due to whatever stresses there were in colonial days, quite a few I'm sure, the settlement just couldn't sustain itself. The remains of the structures could have been just dissembled and reused or could have become firewood. What is actually really creepy is the word carved on the tree. It's the name of a tribe on good terms with the English in the region; what it exactly means is a mystery. A version of the legend has it that the tribe actually began when the Roanoke settlers decided to adopt the tribal ways. In any case it is definitely one of the coolest parts of colonial Americana. That lone tree with one cryptic word crudely carved into it is just a fantastic image.
  6. Sasquatch

    Sasquatch New Member

    I agree OWA. Have you been to Williamsburg, Virginia to visit? Around Halloween they have a ghost tour of all of the supposedly haunted areas. There is a lot of history there and you can feel quite overwhelmed by it if you are alone by chance. One of the taverns there, I learned after I left Williamsburg, is haunted. It is supposed to be on the bottom floor or basement. I had occasion while we were there to visit the men's room down in the basement and it does give you shivers. I didn't realize it was supposed to be haunted but I did my best to hurry to get to the restaurant floor. I seriously don't think I wish to go to that area again. I'm not one to believe in the paranormal but if there are ghosts anywhere, they're in Williamsburg.
    Myrddin likes this.
  7. I live in Georgia and used to see all sorts of television ads about visiting colonial Williamsburg but never went. Now that I've got some disposable income I might plan a trip this summer. Thanks!
  8. Medusa

    Medusa New Member

    Sounds like something I'd like to do. I've never been in Virginia before. I live close-I'm in upper Ohio-but I've never been there. If we get to take a vacation next year, I may have to go. I love history and historical sites. I'm in awe when I stand somewhere our founding father's have been.
  9. Misa

    Misa Member

    "Before the Governor's departure, he and the colonists had agreed that a message would be carved into a tree if they had moved and would include an image of a Maltese Cross if the decision was made by force." Milton, Giles (2000). Big Chief Elizabeth - How England's Adventurers Gambled and Won the New World.

    So it would seem pretty simple to assume they could not survive alone and cut off from England as they had been left without supplies and joined the CRO/CROATOAN on what is now called Hatteras Island, where they had settled in 1584 before going to Roanoke Island two years later.

    John White, who made maps showing both Croatoan and Roanoke, wrote in 1590:

    "I greatly joyed that I had safely found a certain token of their safe being at Croatoan, which is the place where Manteo was born, and the savages of the island our friends."

    Apparently the word craved into tree and post reassured them enough that when a storm struck they simply left.

    ....Which doesn't really make sense to me, but okay?...
  10. The Misfit

    The Misfit New Member

    I can't remember where, but I once read that people who appeared European were later spotted among the natives by settlers on mainland Virginia. It has been conjectured that these were descendants of the missing Roanoke settlers. Has anyone else heard of this?
  11. Shinks

    Shinks New Member

    This theory seems fairly familiar to me, but I can remember where I saw it for the life of me.
  12. Myrddin

    Myrddin Well-Known Member

    I know nothing of the Roanoke except for what I saw in Supernatural, and even that wasn't much. I think maybe even only just the basics of the basics. I would like to get into it though, it sounds fascinating.

    E. M.

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