The streaked grey of river birch trunks contrasts dramatically with the bright fall foliage on the bank of Blounts Creek, NC.
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Beaufort County, NC
This stand of river birch on the bank of Blounts Creek looks like a Craftsman-style wallpaper from Morris and Company.
Blounts Creek has an interesting if dubious history.
When Sir Francis Drake came to Roanoke Island after his successful Caribbean Raid, he had 100 black slaves and 300 South American Indians onboard according to Bunyon Keys in his book Over Three Hundred Years of Black People in Blounts Creek, Beaufort County, North Carolina.
In 1586, before Drake could sail for England with the beleaguered remnants of the original Roanoke colony, a hurricane destroyed some of his ships. Fewer ships required him to leave some of the blacks and Indians on shore when he finally sailed. They melted into the local population.
Bunyon believes some of those freed slaves found their way across Pamlico Sound to Green Swamp near Blounts Creek.
He also suspects survivors of the second Roanoke Colony, the infamous “Lost Colony” founded the year after Drakes’ departure, may have taken the same route, married local Indian women, and been lost to history.
Then again, archeologists have been claiming likely relocation sites for the survivors of the Lost Colony all over the coastal plain.
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