Archaeologists must first re-examine ceramics, including some recovered from an area in Bertie County called Salmon Creek, he said.
"This clue is certainly the most significant in pointing where a search should continue," Lane said. "The search for the colonists didn't start this decade; it didn't start this century. It started as soon as they were found to be absent from Roanoke Island ... I would say every generation in the last 400 years has taken this search on."
But none have had today's sophisticated technology to help, he said.
"None of them had this clue on this map."
Martha Waggoner can be reached at: —http://twitter.com/mjwaggonernc