Lost Colony Still Lost

Today’s News & Observer has a story about the continued search for archaeological evidence of the “lost colony” on Roanoke Island. To aid their efforts, I thought I’d present a map showing exactly what the island looked like when the British colonists landed in 1585:

Roanoke Island

Okay, so maybe it’s not going to be the key to finding evidence of the disappearing colonists after all, but it is a nice image. This illustration is a detail from a map in the 1590 edition of Thomas Hariot’s Briefe and True Account of the New Found Land of Virginia. The North Carolina Collection is in the process of digitizing the images from a rare, hand-colored copy of the book. Check back in a couple of months to see a fascinating collection of the earliest published images of North Carolina and of Native Americans on the North American coast.

12 thoughts on “Lost Colony Still Lost”

  1. Lost Colonists Found! On the pages of my novel, White Seed. White Seed is one of the quarter finalists in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award and I invite you to go and take a look. Based on the actual writings and the historical evidence, White Seed will ‘take you there.” I have published three historicals professionally in the past and I hope to interest publishers in this one. Take a look at: http://www.amazon.com/White-Seed-Amazon-Breakthrough-Novel/dp/B001UG3BO0/ref=sr_1_14?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1238527293&sr=1-14

  2. From Publishers Weekly (a review of White Seed, by Paul Clayton)
    This above-average historical hews closely to the record of Sir Walter Raleigh’s second doomed attempt to plant the British flag in Virginia, but embroiders the who, what, when with enough fanciful embellishment to create a riveting story. The focus is 17-year-old “wench” Maggie Hagger, whose passage on Raleigh’s ship was paid by colony Governor Sir John White so she can serve his pregnant daughter. The ship’s stormy passage to the New World — during which widower White falls for Maggie, who is meanwhile evading unwanted advances from a scalawag — establishes the many well-wrought characters, some noble (particularly real-life Native Manteo), others evil. The depiction of the colony’s physical and moral disintegration between 1587 and 1590 — as drunken, cannibalistic soldiers mutiny and brutalize the settlers they were meant to protect, and as colonists confront disease, starvation and madness — evokes a harrowing sense of human fallibility. Readers with more than a nodding familiarity with American colonial history will experience a cloying déjà vu, but others less hip to what happened in late-16th century times will find this saga, which starts slowly but soon achieves reaches page-turner velocity, to be both a dandy diversion and an entertaining education.


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