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Sir Walter Raleigh for Children



Sir Walter Raleigh was born around 1552, the youngest of five brothers. He grew up in the village of East Budleigh, not far from Devon, England. His family were devout Protestants. Since the Queen Mary I of England was Catholic, this caused a lot of problems from them. At one point, his father even had to hide out to avoid getting captured and executed.

Sir Walter Raleigh served as a soldier in several conflicts. In the 1569 Battle of Jarnac, part of the French Wars of Religion, he served with the French Huguenots. Just ten years later, he took part in the Desmond Rebellions. As reward for his service, he was given 40,000 acres, which included the towns of Lismore and Youghal on the coast.

He began acting as landlord and later mayor of the area. Unfortunately, his skills at land management weren't the greatest and he began to lose money. So he sold the land to the 1st Earl of Cook Richard Boyle.

Sir Walter Raleigh is best known for his plan to colonize the Colony of Virginia, which at that point covered the lands now found in the states of North Carolina and Virginia in the United States. He made several voyages to the New World. His first expedition to Roanoke in 1585 failed when the settlers deserted the colony after getting on the bad side of the natives.

Raleigh sent a second expedition to Roanoke in 1587, this time with a larger group of settlers. Shortly after arriving, his appointed Governor John White returned to England in order to gather more supplies for the colony. Due to the Queen's order to keep all vessels in port to avoid the Spanish Armada, he wasn't able to leave England until a year later.

After leaving England, the fleet headed for Cuba. The crews hoped to find the rumoured riches found there. Between being stuck in England and then detouring to Cuba, it was three years from the time Governor White left before he returned to Roanoke.

When he finally returned, he was surprised to find that all of the colonists had disappeared. The only clue to what happened to them was two tree trunks that had been carved, the first with the letter CROATOAN and the second with the letters CRO.

Some believe that the colonists were kidnapped or killed by the Croatan tribe. Others believe that the Croatan tribe took pity on the colonists and took them in, allowing them to live with the tribe. It is one of the greatest mysteries of the time and to this day the settlement is known as the Lost Colony of Roanoke.

Despite his failure at colonization, Sir Walter Raleigh was a favourite of Queen Elizabeth I, which led to many rewards. Unfortunately, he gained disfavour by secretly marrying one of her ladies-in-waiting and having a child with her. After the marriage was discovered, he was jailed, but later released.

When Queen Elizabeth I died, he was jailed again, this time for his rumoured involvement in a plot against King James. He was released once again, but it wasn't for long. After his men attacked a Spanish outpost, the Spanish ambassador demanded he be put to death. King James order Sir Walter Raleigh be beheaded and sentence was carried out on October 29, 1618.

Walter Raleigh was born around 1552, the youngest of five brothers. He grew up in the village of East Budleigh, not far from Devon, England. His family were devout Protestants. Since the Queen Mary I of England was Catholic, this caused a lot of problems from them. At one point, his father even had to hide out to avoid getting captured and executed.

Sir Walter Raleigh served as a soldier in several conflicts. In the 1569 Battle of Jarnac, part of the French Wars of Religion, he served with the French Huguenots. Just ten years later, he took part in the Desmond Rebellions. As reward for his service, he was given 40,000 acres, which included the towns of Lismore and Youghal on the coast.

He began acting as landlord and later mayor of the area. Unfortunately, his skills at land management weren't the greatest and he began to lose money. So he sold the land to the 1st Earl of Cook Richard Boyle.

Sir Walter Raleigh is best known for his plan to colonize the Colony of Virginia, which at that point covered the lands now found in the states of North Carolina and Virginia in the United States. He made several voyages to the New World. His first expedition to Roanoke in 1585 failed when the settlers deserted the colony after getting on the bad side of the natives.

Raleigh sent a second expedition to Roanoke in 1587, this time with a larger group of settlers. Shortly after arriving, his appointed Governor John White returned to England in order to gather more supplies for the colony. Due to the Queen's order to keep all vessels in port to avoid the Spanish Armada, he wasn't able to leave England until a year later.

After leaving England, the fleet headed for Cuba. The crews hoped to find the rumoured riches found there. Between being stuck in England and then detouring to Cuba, it was three years from the time Governor White left before he returned to Roanoke.

When he finally returned, he was surprised to find that all of the colonists had disappeared. The only clue to what happened to them was two tree trunks that had been carved, the first with the letter CROATOAN and the second with the letters CRO.

Some believe that the colonists were kidnapped or killed by the Croatan tribe. Others believe that the Croatan tribe took pity on the colonists and took them in, allowing them to live with the tribe. It is one of the greatest mysteries of the time and to this day the settlement is known as the Lost Colony of Roanoke.

Despite his failure at colonization, Sir Walter Raleigh was a favourite of Queen Elizabeth I, which led to many rewards. Unfortunately, he gained disfavour by secretly marrying one of her ladies-in-waiting and having a child with her. After the marriage was discovered, he was jailed, but later released.

When Queen Elizabeth I died, he was jailed again, this time for his rumoured involvement in a plot against King James. He was released once again, but it wasn't for long. After his men attacked a Spanish outpost, the Spanish ambassador demanded he be put to death. King James order Sir Walter Raleigh be beheaded and sentence was carried out on October 29, 1618.

This is an original news article © The Kids Window

One in a series of articles of articles about British history written for children, see our range of kids historical dressing up costumes.  



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