Raleigh, NC (AP) – Nearly 1,000 acres that could hold clues to the fate of North Carolina’s mysterious Lost Colony and has ecological importance is now a state natural area.

The state Division of Parks and Recreation said this week in a news release that the North Carolina Coastal Land Trust had conveyed the land in Bertie County to the division.

The trust had taken out a loan of $5.3 million loan to purchase the land.

The land now known as the Salmon Creek Natural Area includes the place where historians now believe some colonists resettled. It also was once home to an Indian village and to the plantation of Thomas Pollock, who served as governor in the early 1700s.

It includes flood plain forests of cypress-gum swamp and bottomland hardwood forest.