North Carolina may be close to solving its Lost Colony mystery, a site where the settlers disappeared from Roanoke Island in the late 16th century, according to The Inquisitr. Researchers have found a clue from the “Virginia Pars” map of Virginia and North Carolina that was created by explorer John White in the 1580s. Phil Evans, president of the First Colony Foundation, says that while the clue is promising, more questions will need to be answered.

“If we were finding this evidence at Roanoke Island, which is the well-established site of Sir Walter Raleigh’s colony, we would have no hesitation to say this is evidence of Sir Walter Raleigh’s colonies,” he said. “But because this is a new site and not associated with Sir Walter Raleigh, we have to hesitate and ask questions and learn more. It’s not Roanoke Island. It’s a new thing, and a new thing has to stand some tests.”

The map seems to be the key to what happened to the settlers. The map has two patches, one of which appeared to correct a mistake, the other hid what appeared to be a fort. The American and British scholars believed the fort symbol could indicate where the settlers went.

Lost Colony has been a mystery for hundreds of years in North Carolina, but now evidence could prove that they just didn’t vanish or disappear. Archeologists with the foundation reviewed artifacts they found years earlier on private land near the site. They decided to dig for more artifacts in 2012 and in 2014, according to Nicholas Lucchetti, an archaeologist who has surveyed and excavated the site since 1974.

While the archeologists have not found a fort, they do have enough artifacts from the time period.

“It’s fair to say it’s a site of very great interest to us,” Lucchetti said. The land owner is cooperating with the dig near the confluence of the Chowan and Roanoke rivers.

Researchers have dug up broken pottery that was used for everyday use by the people who lived there, Evans said. “That’s why domestic wares are interesting to us,” he said. “It tells us people were there long enough to break stuff. … We’re getting these types of wares in sufficient numbers that we think people are there and they’re doing something and they’re there for a good bit of time.”

The area of the Lost Colony is known as Roanoke Island on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. It was named after the historical Roanoke Carolina Algonquian people who inhabited the area in the 16th century at the time of English exploration. It’s about eight miles long and two miles wide.

The fate of the group has never been determined, but myths have developed about them. Stories about the “Lost Colony” have circulated for more than 400 years. Some people even believe that they were abducted by UFOs.

While researchers continue to evaluate the facts, Evans hopes that people don’t expect a big discovery that confirms the site as the home of the colonists. He says that confirmation will take time because there are a lot of pieces of information to analyze. But the latest clue may offer some answers that have a better explanation about the Roanoke people.