L.E Hammond, a Californian tourist, claimed in 1937 to have found a stone inscribed by Eleanor Dare. He took it to Emory University, Atlanta, where it was examined by Dr Haywood Jefferson Pearce, Jr., professor of American history. It stated on one side that Eleanor's husband and daughter were dead, and asked the finder to communicate this to her father:
“Ananias Dare & Virginia went hence vnto heaven 1591.”
On the other side it states:
“Father soone After yov goe for Englande we cam hither/ onlie misarie & warretow yeare “Above halfe DeaDe ere tow yeere moore from sickenes beine fovre & twentie/ salvage with mesage of shipp vnto vs/ smal space of time they affrite of revenge rann al awaye/ wee bleeve yt nott you/ soone after ye salvages faine spirts angrie/ suddiane mvrther al save seaven/ mine childe ananias to slaine wth mvch misarie/bvrie al neere fovre myles easte this river vppon smal hil/ names writ al ther on rocke/ pvtt this ther alsoe/ salvage shew this vnto yov & hither wee promise yov to give greate plentie presents E W D”
Pearce did not immediately declare the stone to be authentic, but argued that the content was not incompatible with the known historical facts, that the spelling conformed to expectations of Elizabethan orthography, and that the necessary tools for such an inscription were likely to have been in the possession of the colonists.