It was evident that Lane
did not possess the quali-
ties suited to his station.
He had not the sagacity which could rightly interpret the stories or the designs of the natives; and the courage, like the eye, of a soldier, differs from that of a traveller.
His discoveries were inconsiderable: to the south they had extended only to Secotan, in the present county of Craven
, between the Pamlico
and the Neuse
; to the north they reached no farther than the small River Elizabeth, which joins the Chesapeake Bay
; in the interior, the Chowan
had been examined beyond the junction of the Meherrin
and the Nottaway
; and we have seen, that the hope of gold attracted Lane
to make a short excursion up the Roanoke
Yet some general results of importance were obtained.
The climate was found to be salubrious; during the year not more than four men had died, and of these, three brought the seeds of their disease from Europe
The hope of finding better harbors at the north was confirmed; and the Bay of Chesapeake
was already regarded as the fit theatre for early colonization.
But in the Island of Roanoke
, the men began to despond; they looked in vain towards the ocean for supplies from England
; they were sighing for the luxuries of the cities in their native land; when of a sudden it was rumored, that the sea was white with the sails of three-and-twenty
ships; and within three days, Sir Francis Drake
had anchored his fleet at sea outside of Roanoke Inlet, in ‘the wild road of their bad harbor.’
He had come, on his way from the West Indies
, to visit the domain of his friend.
With the celerity of genius, he discovered the measures which the exigency of the case required, and supplied the