"It's a very strategic place, right at the end of Albemarle Sound," he said. "You can go north up the Chowan River to Virginia or west to the Blue Ridge Mountains. They were big trading partners with other Native American tribes."
Once the researchers uncovered the secrets of the "La Virginea Pars" map, they scheduled a trip to visit the area along with the help of magnetometers and ground-penetrating radar (GPR).
"What we do is we get the oldest maps we can find-so we can get a historic sense of what was there and what's there now-and orient them," said research associate Malcolm LeCompte at Elizabeth City State University in North Carolina, who was responsible for the GPR.
He looked for similarities between the old map and the current topography. The researchers than used GPR, which sends radio waves into the ground and measures the echo of the signals that bounce off of objects underground.
LeCompte and his team found a previously undiscovered pattern that indicated the possibility of multiple wooden structures approximately 3 feet underground.