As the first child born to English parents in the New World, Virginia Dare became a poster child for early American colonialism following her birth in 1587. Her family was part of just 120 Englishmen and -women to settle on Roanoke Island, off the coast of what is now North Carolina. The colony’s governor — and Virginia’s grandfather — left for England soon after she was born to secure more financial and material resources for the foundering settlement. When he finally returned three years later, he couldn’t find a trace of the toddler — or any of the other settlers. Only one clue remained: the word Croatan had been carved on one of the settlement’s posts, leading many to believe that the Native American Croatan tribe had kidnapped or killed the settlers. Roanoke Island became known as the Lost Colony.