The Lost Colony and Jamestown Droughts

Science  24 Apr 1998:
Vol. 280, Issue 5363, pp. 564-567
DOI: 10.1126/science.280.5363.564

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Tree-ring data from Virginia indicate that the Lost Colony of Roanoke Island disappeared during the most extreme drought in 800 years (1587–1589) and that the alarming mortality and the near abandonment of Jamestown Colony occurred during the driest 7-year episode in 770 years (1606–1612). These extraordinary droughts can now be implicated in the fate of the Lost Colony and in the appalling death rate during the early occupations at Jamestown, the first permanent English settlement in America.

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