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The History of Maritime Piracy

Cindy Vallar, Editor & Reviewer
P.O. Box 425, Keller, TX  76244-0425

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Pirate Articles
Book Reviews
Pirate Links
Sea Yarns Galore
Thistles & Pirates

Welcome in many languages (Source:
                Canstockphoto.com)Cindy Vallar & friend

Welcome aboard Pirates and Privateers, a site devoted to the history of maritime piracy, privateering, and the sea before the Age of Steam.

Within these pages you will find articles dealing with the history and culture of these topics from ancient times to modern day. Click one of the links above or below to explore the treasures within this website.

Newest Article               Newest Book Reviews               Pirate Quote of the Month

News of Note               Events & Activities               Special Resources               The Rebel & the Spy

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Each month, I send out a newsletter about the latest article and reviews posted here. I also include information that doesn't appear at Pirates and Privateers, but is still of interest to adherents of piracy and maritime history. By subscribing to the newsletter, you'll never miss out on the latest happenings here at Pirates and Privateers.

As always, if you have a question about pirates, please write and ask. If there is a particular pirate or subject, you'd like me to write about, let me know.
One cautionary note for those seeking genealogical information: Historical records about pirates are rare. Much of what is known comes from government records, newspaper accounts, and the few contemporary accounts written during a particular period. This information rarely contains details pertinent to what you need to know to identify an ancestor. The simple fact is that the vast majority of pirates' names remain unknown. I cannot answer genealogical questions. Instead, I recommend contacting genealogical depositories and websites, historical societies, and national archives -- places where the librarians and curators are better trained to assist in this type of query.
A special note to teachers and students: If you need help with a project or report, please contact me. Should you use any of my articles or reviews, please let me know and remember to include the proper citation. The majority of material contained with this website is copyrighted.

Fair winds and following seas,


(site last updated 21 July 2024)

Pirate Quote of the Month
The commander went at the head, with about 20 other pirates, with their black silk flag before them, with the representation of a man in full proportion, with a cutlass in one hand, and a pistol in the other, extended; as they were much wounded and no care taken in dressing, they were very offensive, and stunk as they went along, particularly Line the commander; he had one eye shot out, which with part of his nose, hung down on his face.

Boston Gazette, 1726
Description of Captain Philip Lyne and his men as they walked to their trial in Barbados

Smiley AhoyAugust ArticleSmiley Ahoy Reading pirate smileyAugust ReviewsReading pirate smiley
Consequences of Temptation

When someone strays from the straight and narrow, it’s a good idea to think of the consequences. Because no matter what action one takes, there will be ramifications. These may be good or bad, but for pirates the consequence usually falls under the latter category, especially if they’ve riled the authorities one too many times.

Special Bonus Article

Blackbeard’s Pirates in Williamsburg
By Guest Columnist Robert Jacob

Blackbeard and eleven of his crew were killed during a fierce battle with two sloops of the British Royal Navy at Ocracoke on 22 November 1718. Afterward, fifteen suspected pirates were arrested and taken to Williamsburg to stand trial for piracy. The ultimate fate of those men has been incorrectly described in books and articles, and these inaccurate depictions continue to be recreated and retold at historical sites and museums. The commonly accepted belief is that all but two of those pirates were executed at Williamsburg. The only source for this version of the pirates’ fate is a book written in 1724. However, when examining the written records of the arresting naval officers and government officials such as Lieutenant Governor Spotswood and Anthony Cracherode, a completely different outcome emerges.
by Jon Howe
Nautical Fiction

Pedro the Pirate
by Ciara O'Neal
illustrated by Antonella Fant
Books for Young Pirates

Left for Dead
by Eric Jay Dolin
History: Maritime

Girl Before the Legend
by S. K. Minnis
YA Historical Fiction

The Cursed Shore
by J. D. Davies
Nautical Fiction

The Arkanaut's Oath
by Guy Haley
Futuristic Fiction
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Pirate & Maritime News
Events & Activities

                                Construction Sig

Some pages remain in the old style, while others are in the new style. We apologize for this. After twenty-four years, there are many pages to overhaul and this takes time. We appreciate your understanding and patience.

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The Pirate Republic: Africa
                                      Gambit game box
The Pirate Republic: Africa Gambit is now in the "Late Pledge" stage of their Kickstarter campaign. If you'd like more information, click this link. Late Pledges is active until 15 December 2024.

San Salvador Sailing Adventure
Various Saturdays 2024
Museum of San Diego
San Diego, California

Tall Ship Adventure Aboard Californian
Various Sundays 2024
Museum of San Diego
San Diego, California

Voyage to the Deep
Underwater Adventures
through 2 September 2024
Mystic Seaport Museum
Mystic, Connecticut

Bald Head Island Pirate Invasion
2-4 August 2024
Bald Head Island, North Carolina

Pirate's Plunder Game Night
3 August 2024
Palm Coast Community Center
Palm Coast, Florida

Ontario Pirate Festival
3-5 August 2024
Guelph, Ontario, Canada

Vault to Vessel Tour
5 August 2024
USS Constitution Museum
Charleston, Massachusetts

Outer Banks Pirate Festival
7-8 August 2024
Nags Head, North Carolina

Pirate Festival
9-11 August 2024
Brookings, Oregon

Pirates & Wenches Weekend
9-11 August 2024
Rock Hall, Maryland

Pirate Weekend
9-11 August 2024
Bisbee, Arizona

Grain d'Pirate
10-11 August 2024
Binic-Etables-sur-Mer, France

Pirate Festival & Carnival
15-18 August 2024
Lake Chelan, Washington

New London Pirate Night
17 August 2024
New London, Connecticut

Pirate Festival
23 August 2024
Naoussa, Paros Island, Greece

Pirate Viking Summer Festival
24-25 August 2024
Edgewood, New Mexico

Eastport Pirate Festival
6-8 September 2024
Eastport, Maine

Maritime Festival
13-15 September 2024
Ocean Institute
Dana Point, California

Feast of the Pirates Festival
14 September 2024
Belville, North Carolina

Northglenn Pirate Festival
20-21 September 2024
Northglenn, Colorado

Marcus Hook Pirate Festival
21 September 2024
Marcus Hook, Pennsylvania

A New Pirate Adventure
21 September 2024
19 October 2024
30 November 2024
28 December 2024
Maritime Museum of San Diego
San Diego, California

Beaufort Pirate Invasion
22-24 November 2024
Beaufort, North Carolina

Sail 250th New York
4 July 2026
New York City, New York

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Special Resources

The following pages and files contain travel adventures, photo galleries, resources,
and historical data pertaining to pirates, privateers, and maritime history.
I have gathered this information either while doing research or when traveling.


Fun places for pirates in need of rest & relaxation

Pirate Adventures


Photo Galleries

Before the Age of Sail

The Age of Sail

Wooden Sailing Ships



Barbary Corsairs Resources

Canadian Piracy Resources

Modern Piracy Resources

Pirates & Death

Time Line of History

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Janes Madison, 1816, White House Collection
                      https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:James_Madison.jpgJean LaffiteDolley
                      Madison by Gilbert Stuart, 1804 (Source:
                      https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Dolley_Madison_(cropped).jpg)General Andrew Jackson by John Wesley Jarvis,
                      circa 1819 (Source:
https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:General_Andrew_Jackson_MET_DT2851.jpg)William C. C. Claiborne, artist unknown, 19th
                      century (Source:

The Rebel & the Spy
These five people played roles in the War of 1812. James Madison (far left) was president at the time and, in my current work-in-progress, he has a special assignment for Lucas Burnett, one of the protagonists in the novel. Jean Laffite (beside Madison) operates a smuggling operation, based on barrier islands southwest of New Orleans. One of his captains, is Dominique You, whose sister Alexine has been raised in this nefarious world of smugglers, pirates, privateers, and cutthroats. Dolley Madison is the country's presidentress (first lady) and plays a vital role in preserving some of our national treasures during the British invasion of Washington City. General Andrew Jackson (second from right) has no intention of allowing the British to gain entry to the United States through its back door (the Mississippi). Governor William C. C. Claiborne (far right) is Lucas's cousin and a constant thorn in Laffite's side. They come together within the pages of The Rebel & the Spy, a historical novel where it's not always easy to decide who is the rebel and who is the spy.

The links below are to a gallery of places depicted in my novel and a resource list for those seeking information on the people pictured above, pirates, ships in the age of sail, the Battle of New Orleans, the invasion and burning of Washington, the bombardment of Fort McHenry, and much more. (Please note that these pages are updated from time to time, so check back to see what's been added.) I hope you enjoy.

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Pirates & Privateers Newsletter

Each month I alert readers to the posting of the latest piracy article and book reviews, new additions made to the website, and interesting maritime tidbits. If you would like to receive the monthly Pirates & Privateers Newsletter, send me an e-mail with SUBSCRIBE in the subject line.

If you're not sure, here's a sample newsletter to read. I hope you enjoy!

Note to subscribers: If you fail to receive your newsletter, it's possible that your e-mail provider returned it to me for one of several reasons: they deem it to be junk mail; your mailbox is over quota; access to your account is denied; or you changed e-mail address and forgot to notify me of the change. Contact me and we will try to resolve the problem.

If your newsletter bounces two months in a row and you don't contact me, I just delete you from the subscriber list. You're welcome to resubscribe if that occurs.

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Copyright ©2023
Cindy Vallar

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