This article was written by Roberta Estes and originally published in the Lost Colony Research Group Newsletter. www.lostcolonyresearch.org
Thanks to our member Chris for posting this article in our Yahoo group. I’ve taken the liberty of transcribing it here. Please note that at that time the Lumbee were known as the Croatan Indians. The article appeared in the Fayetteville Observer on Feb. 12, 1885 and reads, in part, as follows:
“The colony had disappeared leaving no trace except the word Croatan cut into the bark of a tree. No authentic record of the colony has ever been found. It disappeared from history as if it had never been.
Now Mr. McMillan says that these Croatan Indians of Robeson County claim to be the descendants of the white colony by intermarriage with the whites. They say their traditions say that the people we call the Croatan Indians (though they do not recognize that name as that of a tribe, but only a village, and that they were Tuscarora) were friendly to the whites; and finding them destitute and despairing of ever receiving aid from England, persuaded them to leave the island and go to the mainland. They intermarried with the whites, learned the English language and abandoned their own tongue. They gradually drifted away from their seats and at length settled in Robeson, about the center of the county. The first deed extant for that county was issued in 1732 to Henry Berry and James Lowery, progenitors of the famous Henry Berry Lowery.
Mr. McMillan says they preserve the English language in the way spoken in the days of Chaucer using many words obsolete or only spoken in the rural districts.”