Croatoan Mystery
Oct22

Given the ghostly time of year – with all hallows eve approaching we thought the local spooky tale of the  Croatoan “lost colony” would get you in the “spirit”.

This true story is a mystery from our North Carolinian history dating back to 1587 – it begins with the word CROATOAN carved into a tree and the disappearance of 115 people. It’s even been noticed by American Horror Story who seem to be including it in their sixth series.

Croatoan Mystery

In 1587 Hatteras island was known as Croatoan Island, its native tribe the Croatans. It’s about 80 km southeast of Roanoke, which is where the second attempt at establishing an English colony on American soil was located. At some point between late 1587 and August 1590 the entire population of 90 men, 17 women and 11 children vanished. Leaving only the word CROATOAN carved into a tree and ominously the letters CRO scratched into another. The mystery still remains unsolved.

The colony had met hostility from the Secotans tribe and their supplies were running low. Leader John White sailed back to England for help. He left behind his daughter and newborn granddaughter, whom he would never see again. When he left he had no idea he would be delayed in his return by almost 3 years due funds and the war with the Spanish. Or, that he would become the only known survivor of the “lost colony”.

He landed back at Roanoke on his granddaughters birthday but found nothing – other than the dismantled buildings and that message on the tree. There were no animals or belongings nor any bodies or evidence of battle or massacre.

He returned to England without investigating the Croatoan tribe – there is no given explanation for why.

Is it possible that the colony travelled and absorbed into the Croatan tribe? Archeological remains found from that area and from a site 80 km northwest and inland of Roanoke are being studied to try to answer that question.

Did they meet tragic ends? Gruesome suggestions range from cannibalism, disease, massacre and a failed attempt to sail back to england.

The Mystery Deepens

Here’s where it gets more eerie…

The Croatans were said to believe in a malevolent spirit from their land who could change people into animals – or trees!

And in these more recent mysteries, where the word CROATOAN appears – people disappear.

  • Aviation pioneer Amelia Earhart scribbled it in her journal before her disappearance.
  • Horror Author Ambrose Bierce had the word carved into his bed before he disappeared. 
  • Poet Edgar Allan Poe uttered it on his deathbed in a delirious state.
  • Stagecoach robber Black Bart prisons cell wall was found to have the word scratched into it – he wasn’t seen again after his release.
  • An abandoned ship, ran aground at Cape Hatteras (close to what was Croatoan Island) in 1912, on the last page of it’s logbook – the word CROATOAN.

Is that spirit leading people to their doom, is it a strange coincidence, some secret society or long standing hoax? Could it just be a fascinating story that intrigued these people and drove them to isolation?

Will we ever know? So far, all attempts by historians, explorers and archeologists have fallen short.

You may lose yourself here, you could find yourself here. We’re sure you will never want to leave mwah hahahahahaha.

blackbeard_large
Apr30

Blackbeard – Bath’s most notorious occupant was a plundering scoundrel, but he certainly left his mark. Here’s 5 pieces of gold to wet yer treasure hunting appetite before you come to visit…

  1. Blackbeard,  otherwise known as Edward Teach came from Bristol, England where he served as “privateer” for the British Navy during Queen Annes war of 1702-1713. This is why he named his pirate vessel “Queen Anne’s Revenge”, the wreckage of which was found in 1996 in Beaufort under 20 feet of water.
  2. He came to settle in Bath around June 1718, when he was offered pardon by Charles Eden the colonial governor.  Piracy was becoming less acceptable, and many say the pair brokered a deal to split profits. He didn’t stay terribly long but took his 14th Bride here, and was treated as quite a celebrity!  He brought prosperity to the town as he traded his spoils which attracted visitors from nearby. The thirsty seafaring cohorts that came with him certainly brought plenty of custom to the bars! He was invited to many a lavish dinner and threw rawdy parties at his home on Plum Point.
  3. His fearsome reputation came from his “reign of fear” during which he ambushed passenger and cargo ships in the carribean. He also once held the city of Charleston hostage via a blockade for weeks with his army of 300 pirates at his command. His appearance was deliberately terrifying, his face mostly covered by his blackened smoking beard, he wore a crimson red jacket the pockets were loaded with pistols and knives and belted around his hips he wore 2 swords.
  4. He broke his retirement and went back to piracy, but the British Navy brought him to a gruesome end in a bloody battle at his hideaway at Ocracoke. The autopsy recorded 5 bullet wounds and 20 severe cuts to his headless body.  He was defeated by the Britsh Navy’s Robert Maynard who displayed the head on his ship as a warning. Sightings are often made on a clear evening off the coast, of Blackbeards headless body swimming in search of his own head.
  5. Yet another mystery, is that following stormy nights strange tales are told by the occupants of Bonner house. Which is across the bay from Blackbeard’s old haunt Plum Point.  They speak of a ball of fire the size of a man’s head seen travelling back and forth all night from Archbell point to Plum Point. Perhaps it is Blackbeard’s restless soul pacing his old treasure bound steps?

We hope you enjoyed this bounty! The spirit of Blackbeard certainly still lives on in the area and and there’s still so much more to find out. In the area you will find ghost walks, historical markers, sightseeing tours, talks, the NC Maritime Museum and plenty more to fill yer boots with whilst here. Book your room now.

See you soon, landlubber.