Cindy Vallar, Editor & Reviewer
P.O. Box 425, Keller, TX 76244-0425
Pirate & Maritime Links
Updated 19 August 2021
Reports and statistics on piracy today
Underwater excavations of shipwrecks and pirate locales
Biographies of famous pirates and privateers
Teaching units for use in the classroom
Pirates in books and film
Exotic Ports of Call
Pirate sites in other languages
Ships and Sailing
Wooden sailing ships and life at sea
General histories of pirates and piracy
Outstanding gateways to pirate info
Archaeology comes to the rescue of a 17th-century Shipwreck
Sir William Phipps, the discoverer of the treasure galleon Concepcíon shipwreck, led a squadron against New France in 1690. This site explores Canada’s attempts to preserve the remains of one of those ships.
The Mary Rose
Henry VIII’s pride and joy was this 16th-century warship. Built between 1509 and 1511, she had a successful career before she sank in 1545. This website includes information about the ship, her construction, her armament, the crew, and life aboard her.
National Underwater and Marine Agency (NUMA)
This foundation, founded by author Clive Cussler, strives to preserve our maritime heritage. Includes information on searches for a variety of vessels, including the Hunley and the Bon Homme Richard.
El Nuevo Constante
Two Spanish merchant ships grounded on the Louisiana coast in 1776. One vessel was rediscovered in 1979. This book details her history, the archaeological exploration of the wreck, and the artifacts uncovered.
The Port Royal Project
Port Royal, once a haven for pirates, disappeared into the sea during a massive earthquake in 1692. In 1981, the Institute of Nautical Archaeology joined with other organizations to explore the submerged city. This site tells the story of the underwater excavations.
Queen Anne's Revenge? The QAR ProjectVikingship og norske trebater or Viking Ships and Norse Wooden Boats (Norwegian & English)
The Queen Anne's Revenge was Blackbeard's flagship. It sank off the North Carolina coast in 1718. In 1996, an 18th-century shipwreck, believed to be the QAR, was discovered. Explore the shipwreck with divers and examine the artifacts they found.
This website explores Norse vessels from petroglyphs to the sagas. It also includes pictures of recovered Viking vessels, such as the Gokstad Ship, the Osberg Ship, and the Skuldelev wrecks. Other information related to the period is also presented.
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The Ages of Exploration
The Mariners' Museum and Park welcomes sailors to learn about ancient, medieval, "Age of Discovery," and Modern Exploration. There are fact sheets, detailed information on specific explorers, and links to games.
History of Navigation
Penobscot Marine Museum offers students and teachers this unit of the history of navigation from the 15th through the 20th century. There is also information on using a chart, compass, and logbook. Educators will find learning results and activities for Kindergarten through High School. Resource lists are provided on children's books, high school and adult books, and websites.
New England Pirate Museum
A collection of piratical handouts and activities for use in the classroom or on a visit to the New England Pirate Museum. The handouts are divided according to level: elementary, middle school, and high school. There are also handouts for teachers.
The Not-So-Jolly RogerMr. Nussbaum! Pirates for Kids
This document is for use in conjunction with the Time Warp Trio series produced by WGBH for the Discovery Kids Channel. It includes historical background, activities, and recommended books and websites. The curriculum connections involve government, law, pirates, and the War of 1812. The subject areas to which it connects are language arts and social studies.
This website provides historical information on pirates of the Caribbean, Brabary pirates, famous pirates, flags, vocabulary, and explorers. Other pages include interactive exhibits and math games with a pirate theme. The site also has curriculum material on many other topics concerning language arts, history, science, and much more.
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Exotic Ports of Call
If you need a translator, try Google Translate or Bing Translator.
Le Diable Volant (French and English)
A well-researched site about pirates whose haunting grounds were the Americas during the 17th century. The first part is a work-in-progress history of piracy. The second section provides biographies of pirates in dictionary format. The third section gathers French, English, and Spanish documents from 1640-1699.
Pirates & Corsaires, Ecumeurs des Sept Mers (French)
This site explores the life of Edward Teach, aka Blackbeard. Of particular note is the section on the Jolly Roger. Other information concerns pirate ships, torture, and cinematic pirates.
Website devoted to Virginia's lieutenant-governor, who abhorred pirates and instigated the plan to bring down Blackbeard.
The Cultures & History of the Americas
This online exhibit from The Jay I. Kislak Collection at the Library of Congress includes primary documents on Spanish treasure, Francis Drake’s voyage in early maps, pirates in America, British view of Saint Augustine, 1622 Spanish galleon wreck, a first edition of Exquemelin's De Americaensche Zee-Rovers, and a variety of documents related to native cultures, peoples, flora, and fauna.
Gentlemen of Fortune
This living history site concentrates on the Golden Age of Piracy from 1690 to 1725. Of particular note are the articles on sailors’ clothing, equipment, and weaponry, as well as the online and print resources and information on ships and well-dressed wenches.
Isle of Tortuga
This site provides an overview of piracy with particular emphasis on English and Dutch pirates and the notorious pirate haven of Tortuga. Also contains Exquemelin's The Buccaneers of America.
Museum of Unnatural History
These pages provide a general history on piracy and biographies on several of the more well-known pirates: Morgan, Blackbeard, Kidd, Roberts, and Rackham. Information on the mysterious Oak Island is also included. The Home button will take you to the museum's main page from which you can seek further adventures involving UFOs, lost worlds, dinosaurs, and much more.
This historical collection of piracy trials has been digitized by the Law Library of Congress. These trials occurred before 1900, and they help students, researchers, and others to better understand how various nations handled piracy issues. The full-text documents can be accessed via this bibliography.
The Pirate Empire
TS Rhodes' blog explores fascinating facts about pirates.
Pirate History Podcast
Matt Arthur hosts this show on the realities of pirates during the golden age (1700-1725) and the world in which they lived. He debunks the myths and looks at the forces that influenced them, as well as their influences on us throughout history. He also provides background information to ground listeners in this historical period.
Pirates of Lore
Although the author of this website is unknown, you'll find lots of interesting articles on pirates, pirate places, pirate politics, and pirate life. The focus is on the buccaneering and golden eras of piracy.
Centered in Bristol, England, Pirate Pete provides walking tours with piratical connections. This page of his website includes a virtual tour, as well as information on various people. The American Trail concerns the 13 original colonies and Canada. The Bristol Slaves discusses pirates involved in the slave trade. Pirates and People is a collection of fictional and real personages. West Country Pirates explores areas in the UK.
A Pirate's Glossary of Terms
Careena the Sea Witch brings you a glossary of people and terms divided according to the subject. Seeking financial words or terms dealing with merriment and misery? You'll find them and many more here. Includes pictures and diagrams to help you understand.
The Pirate’s Realm
This well-rounded look at piracy includes biographies , articles of agreement, ships, havens, weaponry, vocabulary, crew members, and more.
Pirates! Fact and Legend
Great site on the history of pirates and their lifestyle. Interesting diagrams on how much compensation a pirate received for the loss of a limb and the parts of a ship. Learn pirate lingo, too.
Pirates of the Bahamas
These pages provide a general history on piracy in the Bahamas with information on Blackbeard, Sir Henry Morgan, and Anne Bonny.
Pirates of the Caribbean
A wealth of information on pirates, including a detailed look at their weaponry, ships, and haunts. Detailed explanations on punishments, especially keel hauling.
Sea Thieves Pirate Association
This British crew recreates the world of Golden Age piracy for education and entertainment. A noteworthy segment of their website has a vast array of articles dealing with a pirate crew and various aspects of their lives: clothes, weaponry, navigation, diet, and more. There is also information on pirate hunting and instructions for making a sea chest.
Spoils of War: Privateering in Nova Scotia
Dan Conlin, a marine historian in Halifax, has compiled an extensive array of information about Canadian privateers. There are lists of privateers as well as the ships on which they sailed.
War of 1812: The Privateers
This site provides information about privateering during the War of 1812. Particular emphasis is on those from Great Britain and Canada, although American privateers are also included, as are naval actions, prize law, a bibliography.
The Way of the Pirates
Divided into four sections, this site provides information on famous pirates, the history of piracy, pirate life, and pirate fiction.
Communis Hostis Omnium
This site navigates the murky legal waters of maritime piracy here. The posts cover Somalia, West Africa, Southeast Asia, around the world, and international rivers. Roger L. Phillips and Matteo Crippa practice international criminal law and both have worked in Africa and other global regions. They also have a number of contributors who are equally well versed on maritime piracy today.
ICC Commercial Crime Services and International Maritime Bureau's Piracy Reporting CentreMaritime & Underwater Security Consultants (MUSC)
The IMB is the anti-crime bureau of the International Chamber of Commerce. After an alarming increase in acts of piracy on the high seas in 1992, IMB set up the Piracy Reporting Centre. Weekly reports on piracy posted.
This company specializes in counter piracy and ship security, as well as a variety of other areas. Under "Maritime Security", you'll find advice on counter piracy and services they provide to improve a ship's vulnerability to attack. "Quick Links" direct you to video, sample seminars from a recent anti-piracy conference, case studies, and more.
Modern High Seas Piracy
In November 2000, Michael S McDaniel, Esquire, of the law offices of Countryman & McDaniel, presented a paper on modern piracy. This presentation provides an overview on the problem, as well as study guides and links to current data.
Piracy at Sea Index (New York Times)Piracy Studies
A collection of links to the latest maritime piracy articles that have appeared in this American newspaper.
The purpose of this website is to bring contemporary maritime piracy research to a wider audience.
The Seamen's Church Institute
The Law and Advocacy page of this organization, which has helped mariners since 1834, includes articles on modern piracy as well as a study on the treatment and assessment on the effects of piracy on seamen and their families.
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Beej's Pirate Image Archive
This collection of pictures includes images of notorious pirates, battles on sea and land, punishments for pirates, pirates having fun, and documents and maps.
Famous Elizabethan Pirates
Who were the Elizabethan pirates, and how did they gain notoriety? This site answers those questions and includes information on later pirates, ships, flags, clothing, the code of conduct, The Pirate Song, the Age of Exploration, and the Elizabethan Era.
Famous Women PiratesIn Drake's Wake
Infographic showcasing some female rogues throughout history. (Link to code for embedding on your website is available on this page, which also includes a second infographic of the Pirate Ledger of other female pirates.)
Michael Turner has been exploring the world to trace Francis Drake's movements. His website includes information about Drake, his life and voyages, the places he visited, and more.
Pardon Captain Kidd
Neil Young spearheads a drive to have Queen Elizabeth II issue a royal pardon for Captain Kidd. His website provides a wealth of information, including primary documentation, to support this cause and to provide history information about William Kidd, including his wife, Sarah.
Privateer Dragons' Famous Pirates and Privateers
Part of Privateer Dragons' Island, this extensive list of sea marauders includes short biographies and some pictures. If you explore the rest of the site, you'll discover a pirate dictionary, pirate yarns, pirate name generators, and links for pirate and renaissance fair re-enactors.
Rob Ossian's Pirate's Cove
Rogues gallery of pirates, privateers, and explorers. A 15th-century sailing glossary. Renaissance trade routes. Restored and reconstructed wooden ships. Nautical archeological resources and web sites. Sailing knots.
Sir Francis Drake: A Pictorial Biography
Using manuscripts, engraved portraits, and a variety of other materials, this site portrays Drake as his contemporaries (friends and enemies alike) saw him.
William Dampier: 1679-1707
Unlike many buccaneers, Dampier enjoyed scientific exploration while participating in piracy. Pages from his journals and information about his journeys are included in this special exhibit, Voyages: Scientific Circumnavigations 1679-1859, hosted by the Linda Hall Library of Science, Engineering & Technology.
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The Buccaneers of America, 1678
This Library of Congress exhibit provides access to the original edition of Alexandre Exquemelin’s book, which you can view page by page as if you were looking at the actual tome. Translations and audio available.
I Sailed with Chinese Pirates by Aleko E. Lilius
A journalist's first-hand account, originally published in 1930, of sailing with Chinese pirates led by a female captain. The authors of Terry and the Pirates fashioned their character, The Dragon Lady, after Lai Choi San, the female pirate in this account.
The Pirate of Panther BayPirates in Print
Stemming from a recent novel, this web site allows you to read chapters from the book, as well as articles on piracy and reviews of other pirate books. Visitors can also help write the next book in series.
Online exhibit featuring the seafaring treasures of the Mandeville Special Collections Library. It covers Elizabethan seadogs, buccaneers, pirates and science, Red Sea pirates, the war on pirates, pirates in novels and popular culture.
Online Full-text Books by and about pirates and the sea -- These sites are not rated.
Ships and Sailing
Nautical terms defined. Some words are common and some are not. A place to learn something new.
Through the use of primary resources, this blog explores the dress of common seamen of Britain and America from 1740 to 1790.
This site provides a comprehensive look at life in the Royal Navy during the late 18th and early 19th centuries. Articles discuss shipboard life, health, pay and prize money, ships and tactics, battles, weaponry, press gangs, crime and punishment, and much more.
Explorers at Sea
This website teaches about navigation and sailing during the Age of Exploration. A variety of subjects are explored. If you click on the Home page, it takes you to a link for teachers.
The Gaspee Virtual Archives
The Gaspee, an armed schooner of the Royal Navy, terrorized Rhode Island in 1772. She ran aground while chasing a packet boat near Providence, and the citizens gathered to destroy her under cover of darkness. This site includes analyses of the affair, eyewitness testimony, reactions to the burning, who’s who, background information on the times, controversies surrounding the Gaspee, miscellanea, and projects for teachers and students.
The Historical Maritime Society in Nelson's Time
This UK group of re-enactors provides a fascinating look at life at sea during the late 18th and early 19th centuries. In addition to a contemporary account of a ship's cook, there is information on the clothes worn by working women, who went to sea, maggots and weevils, and diet and victualling, including a recipe for portable soup for those who couldn't stomach the regular fare served aboard Royal Navy ships.
Jo Stanley's Women at SeaLog Lines
An authority on women at sea and editor of Bold in Her Breeches, a book about women pirates, Jo Stanley provides bibliographies on books dealing with various aspects of women at sea from traditional roles, to those who assumed male persona, and more.
A blog about the collections of and research about the USS Constitution, also known as Old Ironsides.
Logotheras: Historical Dictionary of Mediterranean Nautical TermsLynx: America's Privateer
This interesting group of references from Alan H. Harlety concerns nautical language in the Mediterranean.
Historical representation of a privateer from the War of 1812, Lynx is a square topsail schooner. She serves as a classroom and training vessel. She bears the name of a Baltimore Clipper built in Fells Point, Maryland in 1812 that the British captured in 1813.
The Maritime History Virtual Archives
Extensive information on maritime history. Of particular interest: shipbuilding, masts and rigging, seamanship, sailing ships, duties of officers and men, and gunnery.
Michael of Rhodes
Oarsman on a Venetian galley in medieval times, Michael of Rhodes spent four decades sailing aboard naval vessels or merchant ships. This website covers practical seamanship during this time period, including math, ships and their construction, and navigation.
Mystic Seaport's G. W. Blunt White Library
The digital resources are a treasure trove for researchers. The Ship Registers Database allows users to trace the history of specific ships and/or individuals. Also available are account books, diaries, certificates, crew lists, custom papers, insurance company records, journals, letters, logbooks, maps, a mariner's medical guide, papers, protection certificates, schedules, shipping records, ships' papers, sketchbooks, and much more. Most of these documents pertain to the 19th century, but there are some from the 18th and 20th centuries as well. Mystic Seaport also has several online exhibits: Charles W. Morgan crew list, Westward Expanison, 19th-century Merchant Marine, 1890 San Francisco Shanghaiing, and Immigrant Vessels.
National Maritime Museum
Search Britain's maritime museum for photos of artifacts and artwork pertaining to life at sea throughout history. There's also a fact sheet on pirates under Education.
National Maritime History SocietySmugglers' Britain
NMHS's new website provides visitors with the latest news and events about the maritime world, access to Sea History magazine, resources for research, educational videos and resources, and a special section just for children where they can learn about maritime careers, do interactive games, and much more.
Explore the realm of smuggling in the British Isles during the 18th and 19th centuries in this companion website to Richard Platt's Smuggling in the British Isles
William Falconer's Dictionary of the Marine
An online version of a marine dictionary published in 1780. Provides definitions or explanations on ship construction, equipment, furniture, machinery, movements, and military operations.
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Treasure TrovesBearings of Baltimore
The University of Maryland Baltimore County's Imaging Research Center's interactive map visualizes Baltimore City in 1815. This first phase depicts Fell's Point, Baltimore, and Whetstone Point as they appeared the year the War of 1812 ended. During the war, the British referred to Baltimore as a nest of pirates because of the many privateers that were built in Fell's Point and sailed from Baltimore. Among the places you can view are Fort McHenry and Thomas Kemp's Shipyard, where Chasseur was built. (Note: although the website says the tour requires Google Chrome, it does work in Explorer and Mozilla.) [For more on these privateers, click here.]
Colonies, Ships, & Pirates
This new blog explores the history of the Atlantic world from 1680 to 1740. Historian and researcher David Fictum writes about colonial history, ships and maritime history, and pirate history. One example under the last topic concerns life in New Providence when it was a pirate haven.
Gold and Gunpowder
Willem Red-Beard hosts regular documentaries about pirates and pirate history, as well as reviews of pirate literature, pirate places, and pirate arms and tactics. Runtime varies from three minutes to twenty. The videos are entertaining and enlightening.
Pauline's Pirates & Privateers
This blog explores a compendium of topics related to maritime piracy. Recurring topics include tools of the trade, pirate literature, nautical vocabulary, and piratical history. Pauline also writes about subjects related to Jean Laffite and the Baratarians.
Samples of actual piratical documents that can be individualized if you purchase. You'll find licenses, letters of marque and reprisal, admiralty reports, advertisements, pamphlets, shipboard articles, and more.
The Pirate Surgeon's Journals
Mission the Pirate Surgeon chronicles his journey and discoveries as he plunders historical resources to acquire knowledge about surgery and pirates during the Golden Age of Piracy. Pirate Miscellanea includes articles -- both scholarly and humorous -- on pirates, piratical decorating tips, and less serious information (don't miss the Do-It-Yourself Pirate School Report). Tools and Procedures focuses on the various instruments surgeons employed while practicing their livelihoods, as well as surgical procedures and pirate surgeon history. The Events Journal page concern Mission's various visits to pirate festivals, while About the Author chronicles his journey from his present-day life into the re-enactor Mission the Pirate Surgeon.
Real Pirates Don't Wear the Jolly Roger
Primarily for people who want to create authentic-looking pirate costumes, this website covers a variety of topics of interest to anyone searching for historical information about pirates. The primary topics covered are "What Kind of Pirate Are You?", clichés, definitions, research topics, a bibliography and links, and historical topics. This last subject area covers boucan, clothing and accessories, colonial life, dancing, food and drink, the Golden Age, songs and chanteys, the Spanish Main, sumptuary law, treasure maps, and weapons. The subtopic of "pirate" includes information on the brigand, buccaneer, corsair, female pirates, marooner, privateer, Sea Dog, sea rover, swashbuckler, and Viking.
The Pirate Glossary
Careena the Sea Wench presents an overflowing treasure chest filled with words to round out a pirate's vocabulary. Within the pages of this website you'll learn about famous pirates, in addition to lexicons dealing with phrases, ships & ship anatomy, finances, flags, merriment & misery, name-calling, places, weaponry, and measurements. She also includes artwork and diagrams to illustrate some of the words.
Pirates and swashbucklers go hand in hand. Here you’ll find a pirate store, pirate movies, books and tales, and special pages devoted to pirate authors: Rafael Sabatini and Robert Louis Stevenson. Other topics cover literature and authors, movies and actors, D’Artagnan the Musketeer, and a history of swashbuckling. There’s also a message board.
Talk Like a Pirate Day
Once a year pirates celebrate "Talk Like a Pirate Day." The founders, Mark "Cap'n Slappy" Summers and John "Ol' Chumbucket" Baur, maintain this web site with a variety of advice and links to help those who want to talk like pirates. (Site for Adults rather than Children)
Under the Crossbones
Interviews with historians, writers, artists, small business owners, musicians, actors, and many others who share their fascination with pirates and pirate lore. An episode guide allows ready access to past episodes and previous guests, including Don Maetz, Tiger Lee, Cap'n Slappy and Ol' Chumbucket, Benerson Little, and yours truly.
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