On loan from the South Carolina State Museum and sponsored by the Hampton History Museum Association, Pirates, Privateers and Buccaneers, tells the story of Blackbeard, the infamous pirate known for his thick beard and fearsome image. It also tells the stories of many other pirates.
The exhibit will thrill those who have always been fascinated by these desperadoes of the seas. It will dispel a number of popular myths about pirates, such as how they made their victims walk the plank and used phrases such as ‘arrrgh,’ and ‘matey,’ which are Hollywood fiction. The exhibit will also address the problem of modern piracy, dispelling the myth that pirates disappeared a long time ago.
History says that when North Carolina merchants asked for help breaking up piracy along the Outer Banks, Virginia governor Alexander Spotswood sent the Royal Navy under the command of Lieutenant Robert Maynard. Blackbeard was killed in a fierce battle off the coast of North Carolina on November 22, 1718. Afterwards, Maynard had Blackbeard’s head hung from the bowsprit of his sloop. On arrival in Virginia, Blackbeard’s head was moved to a pole at the mouth of the Hampton River - a warning to others who might be tempted by piracy.
Today, that area continues to be known as Blackbeard’s Point. Pirates, Privateers and Buccaneers was developed by the South Carolina State Museum, with research, collaboration and assistance from the North Carolina Museum of History, the Queen Anne’s Revenge Project of the North Carolina Office of State Archaeology, and the North Carolina Maritime Museum.