Roanoke Island in the 1500s

Reconstructed earthwork fort, covered in grass
The original earthen fort was likely built in 1585, though its exact purpose and time of construction remain a mystery.

NPS/Kurt Moses

Home to Carolina Algonquian peoples for centuries, Roanoke Island became known to the English on an exploratory voyage in 1584. The initial exploration was followed by the establshment of a military colony in 1585 and a settlement colony in 1587. The settlement colony would become famous as the "Lost Colony of Roanoke."
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    Last updated: May 11, 2023

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