Pirates: Caribbean to Carolina
Headquarters for an enterprise such as this required certain special accommodations, and clearly remote tropical islands in the middle of the vast sea provided ease of access to the workplace. The British abandoned New Providence in the Bahamas in 1704 in the wake of Spanish and French raids, and it became ripe for a pirate takeover. The Haitian Island of Tortuga was another favorite with the added advantage of being close to Cuba, a popular stop for Spanish galleons. The most infamous of all was Port Royal, a Jamaican city said to have one tavern for every ten residents.
By the early 1700s the long arm of the law began reaching into these notorious pirate haunts and the relocation scouts had to go looking for new hideouts. This was a time when colonial settlements were just beginning to take hold on the east coast, and it came to their attention that not much was going on between Jamestown, Virginia and Charles Town (Charleston), South Carolina. And that was because lots of small coves, bays and inlets made it difficult for large ships to navigate.
For that very same reason, coastal North Carolina settlements welcomed pirates with open arms. The settlers had been ignored by their government, cut off from major trading centers, and starved for any kind of decent shopping. A pirate ship coming ashore with its hold full of loot had to look like a gift from God, and they could pretty much get anything they wanted at huge markdowns well below retail.
A HREF="http://www.ncbeaches.com/CrystalCoast/Beaufort/">Beaufort, the Cape Fear Region, Ocracoke on the Outer Banks, Bath and Edenton all extended hospitality and shelter in exchange for the finer things in life unavailable to them from any other source. Like the islands, these were isolated places with lots of good hiding places, and it is widely believed that North Carolina Governor Charles Eden was in cahoots with Blackbeard and Stede Bonnet.
Click on the links below for more information on the infamous and lesser-known pirates that plagued and plundered the North Carolina coast.
Terms: North Carolina Pirates, NC Pirates
Information on North Carolina Pirates.