Ep. 53: Jamestown Cannibalism – America’s First Horror

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Jamestown, Virginia was the first successful English settlement in North America (for the first UNsuccessful one, go check out our episode on Roanoke) – but it came close to failing completely many, many times. The worst of these failures being the tragic Starving Time.

Plagued by a deadly combination of famine, disease, and an enemy Native tribe, the Starving Time in winter 1609-1610 almost wiped out the entire colony, leaving only 60 survivors from the original group of 500. And some of these desperate survivors were forced to commit one of the most horrific acts imaginable to live…cannibalism.

In 2012 archaeological proof was finally discovered that confirmed what some historians had suspected all along: the Jamestown survivors ate their fellow man during the Starving Time. This week, we take a trip back in time to this deadly winter, and debate if we’d be able to make these terrible choices ourselves.

We also have a super-sized news segment this episode with 2 stories on True Crime Time: the second part of the strange saga of South Carolina’s blue-blooded Murdaugh family, and the tragic disappearance and murder of Gabby Petito – a case that is still unfolding as we record.


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