The crest for House Croatan evokes the traditional heraldry of its founder. The powerful elemental wizard Virginia Dare was the first British child born in the new world, to parents Ananais and Eleanor Dare, themselves formidable wizards of British heritage. The crown symbolizes the sovereignty of Virginia Isle, the famous floating island populated mostly by Dare’s extended family, and its proud state of autonomy from the five provinces of the Magimundi. Virginia Isle mainly floats in the sky above the Atlantic and is protected by a wide variety of flying creatures: dragons, wyverns, manticores, and wisps. Typically the Isle migrates southerly to Solaris Province in the wintery months, and then north to Destiny as summer approaches. The rope shown on the crest both tethers and liberates, demonstrating the ties to tradition and the ability to cast off those bonds should they prove to hold one back, or pull them down. The ship's wheel represents that one may steer one’s course through life, and that the actions one dares to take set the direction of one’s journey.
House Croatan has come to be associated with Cryptozoology as the legacy of its founder. Additionally, it’s associated with wealth in Leeuwendaalders, and many students from families of Unsoiled wizard heritage call House Croatan their home. Like Virginia Isle itself, House Croatan is a bit of an enigma to those outside of it, with carefully kept secrets and traditions. There is an air of importance and duty among house members, who consider their election to Croatan to be evidence of their power and influence among the Magimundi, which they are to use wisely.
Among house members, Croatan has come to mean different things in different turns. For some, they choose to shine a light on the concept of unity and many coming together to create something greater than the sum of its parts, similar to the founding of New World Magischola. Another popular viewpoint in House Croatan is that Virginia Dare's bold actions and the house motto are something of a guide to go forward and take great strides (even if ill advised at times), that time is not wisely spent procrastinating and philosophizing- one must act if they wish to see things accomplished. To dare is to do, after all.
As a renowned cryptozoologist, Dare’s vast knowledge of hidden magical creatures of the air, earth, sea, and underworld helped her to create and defend Virginia Isle. She could summon creatures to her aid, and communicate in their own languages. Dare had such affinity for all living things that even the most hostile magical creatures would submit in her presence, and poisonous plants would not affect her. She delighted in demonstrating these powers by defiantly chewing arum berries, drinking nightshade draught from a goblet, or running barefoot across thorns and nettles without the slightest scratch.
Virginia Dare was instrumental in the founding of New World Magischola in 1635 when her daughter Ophelia was refused admittance to Imperial Magischola of Massachusetts Bay. She provided the majority of the Leeuwendaalders necessary to fund the school’s construction and pay faculty salaries. The Samson family, directly related to Virginia Dare herself, remains the custodian of a generous endowment that almost single-handedly supports the continued funding of New World Magischola.
Raised in the English tradition, the Pickerell family were Loyalists to the British crown during that messy little debacle with the colonies. Pickerell showed great proficiency in the study of Artificiery, since it was a discipline that required great patience and attention to detail. They spent hours in the workshop making sure to get every detail of the latest projects right. After graduating P2A4, Pickerell was accepted into New World Magischola, though they had had their heart set on the Imperial Magischola of Massachusetts Bay, an institution that they felt was far more proper, dignified, and English. They excelled at artificery at NWM.
After graduation, Pickerell immediately applied for a professorship at Imperial Magischola, but again was passed over without explanation. Dejected, Pickerell returned to New World Magischola and became a professor of Artificiery, but found the students to be disrespectful, contemptuous of tradition, and with a tendency to celebrate ignorance. By 1812, the Mundane World found itself involved yet another war, and this time, Pickerell knew that the British motherland would finally come through to teach these “Colonial upstarts” a lesson in propriety and respect. They silently cheered the British troops as they invaded the lands near New World Magischola. By wandering too closely to the sites of battles, Pickerell noticed that the British soldiers engaged in some very ungentlemanly forms of combat. They began to attack civilians, and to set churches and schools ablaze. Their illusions shattered, Pickerell decided to return to New World Magischola with a renewed purpose, to give the full measure of their effort and energy teaching the students they were for the first time proud of. On the way, they were cut down by a stray bullet, in a war that had far too many civilian casualties. They did return to the New World Magischola, of course, but as the ghost for House Croatan.
Pickerell seeks to uphold propriety and order in the Magischola, but they also know that is a lesson that cannot be forced. Young people must come to accept manners and respect on their own, for if you push them, they will push back. As House Croatan ghost, they’ve seen it all: Armies of revenants, curses gone horribly awry, Wizards battling in the quadrangle, once there was even an Ahuizotl in the swimming pool. Tragedies come and go, but it is important to keep a stiff upper lip and one’s composure. Many of the other entities (both living and non-) at the school disagree, but Pickerell is here to say that the most important time for order is when under the threat of disorder. So, let the others panic and throw the rules out the window; Pickerell will be marching in perfect step, impeccably dressed, right up until the last days.