• Dogwoods in bloom during the spring

    Fort Raleigh

    National Historic Site North Carolina

Park Celebrates Virginia Dare 425th Birthday

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Date: August 13, 2012
Contact: Outer Banks Group, 252-473-2111

Fort Raleigh National Historic Site Celebrates Virginia Dare's 425th Birthday

Born to Ananias and Eleanor Dare on August 18th, 1587, Virginia Dare was the first child born to English parents in the New World.Her birthday has been remembered and celebrated annually on Roanoke Island since 1937.At this year's Virginia Dare Day on Saturday, August 18th, activities will be taking place on the grounds at Fort Raleigh National Historic Site and at The Elizabethan Gardens.

The National Park Service will offer special programs to help visitors better understand the role the date of August 18th plays in the history of the Lost Colony.All programs are free and are 25-minutes in length:


10 a.m. & 1 p.m. - The Birth and Baptism of Virginia Dare: This program will explore why these are important events for our country.Meet at the Earthen Fort.

11 a.m. & 2 p.m. - August 18th 1590: The Governor & Grandfather Returns: John White returned to Roanoke Island three years to the day of the birth of his granddaughter Virginia Dare.What did he find when he arrived?Why did he leave so quickly?Meet at the visitor center auditorium.

12 p.m. & 3 p.m. - What Happened to Virginia Dare?: There are multiple theories on the fate of Virginia Dare.Join us for a discussion.Meet at the visitor center auditorium.

The Elizabethan Gardens and staff from The Lost Colony will be offering a variety of activities taking place at the parking area near and within The Elizabethan Gardens itself.For more information on those activities, please check www.thelostcolony.org and www.elizabethangardens.org.

Kids are also invited to participate in the Fort Raleigh National Historic Site Junior Ranger Program.By completing a booklet and attending programs, kids can earn a Junior Ranger badge!Junior Ranger booklets are free and available at the visitor center.

The Fort Raleigh National Historic Site Visitor Center is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.A 17-minute video about the Roanoke Voyages will also be shown throughout the day.

Did You Know?

Map of the battle of Roanoke Island, courtesy of the Library of Congress

An early major Union victory during the Civil War happened on Roanoke Island on February 8, 1862. 15,000 Union soldiers overran the Confederate garrison of only 3,000 men and opened up Eastern North Carolina to Union invasion. More...