The Roanoke Colony on Roanoke Island in Dare County in present-day North Carolina was an enterprise financed and organized by Sir Walter Raleigh in the late 16th century to establish a permanent English settlement in the Virginia Colony. Between 1585 and 1587, groups of colonists were left to make the attempt, all of whom either abandoned the colony or disappeared. The final group disappeared after a period of three years elapsed without supplies from England, leading to the continuing mystery known as "The Lost Colony." Some ninety men, seventeen women, and eleven children had disappeared; there was no sign of a struggle or battle of any kind. The only clue was the word "Croatoan" carved into a post of the fort and "Cro" carved into a nearby tree. The principal hypothesis is that the colonists were absorbed by one of the local indigenous populations, although the colonists may possibly have been massacred, by the Spanish or by the Powhatan Confederacy.
Game and Story Use
- PC's could be colonists and have to deal with whatever the gm decides caused the disappearance of the colonists.
- Alternatively, they might be members of a ship sent to provide supplies and have to search for clues as to the colony's fate.
- The colonists could have been destroyed or enslaved by monsters or natives.
- On the other hand, perhaps they heard of a wondrous land of gold and treasure further inland and moved on to find it.
- In an alternate history, one of the other theories takes precedence. The PCs have until the next supply ship arrives to discover the truth, or war will break out with Spain!