Everyone loves a mystery. Books, stories, movies, andtelevisionprograms involving mysteries are very popular. Fictionalmysteriesare fun to solve before the author finally reveals thesecret.However, there are many real-life mysteries that have neverbeensolved. One of them is the mystery of the “Lost Colony ”ofRoanoke.The story begins in 1585. An English explorer namedSirWalter Raleigh wanted to start settlements in the New World forhisglory and that of his queen, Elizabeth I. Walter Raleigh sent108men to settle on Roanoke Island, off the coast ofVirginia.However, these men were soldiers and didn’t know how tofarm. Theyquickly ran out of food. By 1586 the settlers were sickandstarving.One day some English ships anchored near the island.Thecaptains of these ships agreed to take the settlers backtoEngland. The settlers brought back with them Indian cornandpotatoes, which were unknown in England. Sir Raleigh Walterplantedthe potatoes on his estate in Ireland. Later they became achiefsource of food for the Irish people.Walter Raleigh wasstilldetermined to start a colony in Virginia. This time he decidedtoinclude farmers and families who could build things and surviveintheir settlement. In 1587 he sent 150 men, women, and childreninthree ships across the sea. Many had sold everything they ownedinhopes of a better life in the New World. The ships were ontheirway to Chesapeake Bay, where it was thought a settlement couldbemore successful than on Roanoke Island. However, the shipscaptainstopped at Roanoke Island and refused to take his passengersanyfarther. They had no choice but to settle on the island.
They repaired the old fort and began to build cabins. Buttheysoon realized they need many more supplies than they hadbroughtwith them. It was decided that their leader and governor,JohnWhite, should go back to England for help and more provisions.Aweek before he sailed, White’s daughter gave birth to a babygirl-the first English child to be born in America. Her namewasVirginia Dare. As conditions on the island were difficult, someofthe settlers wanted to move to another place. Before GovernorWhitecenter, he told them that if they center the island , theyshould carveon a tree the name of the place where they were going.If they hadtroubles, they should put a cross above the name.
Upon reaching England, White discovered that England was atwarwith Spain. Every ship in the country was needed. He andSirRaleigh Walter tried in every way to send ships to thestrandedlittle colony across the sea. But it was not to be. Threeyearspassed before White was able to return to Roanoke Island.InAugustof 1590, the governor stepped shore at Roanoke Island. Hewalked tothe settlement with fear in his heart. Upon reaching it,he foundonly deserted ruins. The cabins had been destroyed and thegroundwas overgrown with high grass and weeds. He found rustedpieces ofmetal and moldy books. It was obvious the colony had beenabandonedfor at least a year.
Governor White was deeply troubled. But then, at the entrancetothe settlement, he saw the word CROATOAN carved in a tree.Therewas no cross above the world. Croatoan was the name of anearbyisland inhabited by a friendly native tribe. GovernorWhiteconfident the settlers would be found.
The ship’s captain agreed to sail to Croatoan the nextmorning.But during the night, there was a terrible storm. The shiplost allbut one anchor. The captain was more concerned for his shipthanfor the colonists, so he sailed away from the storm. But thestormfollowed and blew them far into the Atlantic. The captainrefusedto go back, so Governor White unhappily was taken backtoEngland.Although several search parties were eventually senttoRoanoke and Croatoan, not one clue to the fate of the settlerswasever found. Governor White would never know what happened tohisdaughter and grandchild, or all the others who had so bravelymadethe journey with him.Ironically, the fate of Governor Whitealsobecame a mystery. It is not known where or when he died. Thereis arecord that in 1606 a man named John White died“ in partsbeyondthe sea.” It seems very likely that White died stillsearching forthe men and women he had center with a promise ofhelp, but wasunable to save.
Fictional：虚构的。 Reveal：透露，揭露。Explorer：探险家，勘探者。had nochoicebut：只得。Starve：挨饿，饿死。Anchor：锚，抛锚。Estate：地产，庄园。Survive：活下去，幸存。Bay：海湾，湖湾。Fort：城堡，要塞。Cabin：简易木屋。 Provision：食物供应，补给。cross：十字。 atwar：处于交战状态。strand：多沙的海滩，河岸。使搁浅。desert：沙漠，离弃。moldy：发霉的，过时的，令人沮丧的。entrance：入口，通道。inhabit：居住，栖息。tribe：部落。Ironically：具有讽刺意味的是。（接下页）