Sunday, January 30, 2022

The Legend of the White Doe on Roanoke Island


The legend of the White Doe on Roanoke Island is centuries old. But, like all legends, the word of mouth story did eventually find its way to script and the written word to preserve the legend for generations to come.

The birth of the first English child in the New World on August 18th, 1587, is where "The Legend of the White Doe on Roanoke Island" begins.

The first English child born in the new world was the daughter of Ananias & Eleanor (White) Dare & the granddaughter of Governor White. Governor White had claimed Roanoke Island in the name of Queen Elizabeth I, calling the land Virginia in her honor. 

In honor of Queen Elizabeth I, Ananias & Eleanor Dare had their daughter baptized, "Virginia Dare, " on August 24th, 1587. Virginia Dare's grandfather, Governor White, reluctantly set sail for England to replenish supplies one day later.

Governor White arrived in England to find an entire-fledged War between England and Spain. It was three long years before Governor White set foot upon Roanoke Island.

Governor White found the settlement abandoned with only one clue carved into a tree, the letters "Croa." Governor White had requested a message be left if the settlement had to be abandoned & he interpreted this message to mean "Croatan," the location of today's Hatteras Island.

Due to ill health & the reluctance of the ship's crew, Governor White returned to England, unable to explore & confirm any continued lineage of the first English Colony, historically known as "The Lost Colony."

What happened to "The Lost Colony?." Did the Colony relocate and assimilate into the native population of Hatteras Island?

"The White Doe; The Fate of Virginia Dare; An Indian Legend" copyright 1901 authored by Sallie Southall Cotten, can be read in its entirety at The Project Gutenberg as an eBook.

"This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere in the United States and most other parts of the world at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included with this eBook or online at If you are not located in the United States, you'll have to check the laws of the country where you are located before using this ebook." 

The story tells of the White English Maiden assimilated into the native tribe on Croatan (Hatteras Island). There were two suiters in the story longing for Virginia Dare's heart & affections.

The native brave that Virginia rejected is said to be the one who used ancient evil magic to turn Virginia Dare into a White Doe.

The native brave that Virginia had given her heart to was devastated and sought out the help of an excellent native medicine man. An arrowhead was made from an oyster shell and magically turned into a pearl arrow tip. So Virginia's native brave that held her heart was told to Pearse the heart of the White Doe with the Pearl arrow tip to return Virginia to her human body. 

Meanwhile, at the opposing native tribe's camp, plans were fashioned by Wanchese for the use of an arrow tip intended to kill the White Doe. 

Virginia's beloved brave & Wanchese both spotted took aim and shot through the heart of the White Doe at the exact moment. 

The White Doe transformed back into the human image of Virginia Dare but lay dead. 

The brave, loving Virginia, devastated, grabbed both of the arrows, throwing both into a magic well, begging for the life of Virginia to be returned to him. Sallie Southall Cotten best voices the remaining last moments & conclusion; 

Both Supernatural & Christianity appear in this tale. The forces of life are alive with Love & Hate, Acceptance & Rejection, Endurance, Longing & the Growth of a Nation.

This written story is but one version of the legend of the White Doe. Through many tales, Virginia Dare remains immorally roaming the island of Roanoke as The White Doe.

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