My opinion: why did Roanoke fail?
I think Roanoke failed in the planning stage, mainly in the solutions Raleigh used to tackle three of his big problems. His first problem was paying for the colony. Raleigh’s solution to this was persuading merchants to lend him money, and in return he would give them a share of his plunder from any Spanish ships they met on the voyage. This was a bad solution as he might not be able to get anything of value from the trip, although luckily the governor of Hispaniola did give them some pearls and other valuable items. His second problem was getting people to go to Roanoke in the first place, and he solved this by scouring the pubs for sailors, waiting for them to pass out drunk and carrying them onto the ships. This was a bad idea as the sailors might not be cooperative as they had been kidnapped and floated off towards a small island in North America. Raleigh’s third problem was choosing the leaders. I personally think that this was the biggest part in the failure of Roanoke, as his commander was Richard Grenville; Grenville had no sailing experience, he had a short temper, and also a big drinking problem. Another thing is that it was Grenville’s decision to store most of the supplies on The Tiger, which caused many people on the other ships to die when a storm separated them. He was only chosen as he loved adventure and hated Spain. However, Raleigh did make good decisions for the other leaders; he chose Ralph Lane as governor, Lane was an expert at fort building and enjoyed a hard life. Thomas Harriet was chosen to map the terrain, and was also able to communicate with Wancheso and Manteo, two of the natives. The final good choice, and in my opinion the best choice, was John White. White was chosen to record the trip with his paintings, and he was a good influence on everyone in general.