In this episode, we continue our tale of Boston in the Golden Age of Piracy, picking up at the end of the War of The Spanish Succession. We’ll learn about some of the most fearsome and notorious pirates in history, as well as one of the most ineffective. We’ll see how one of these pirates gave a founding father his start in public life, which US president’s great grandfather bought a former pirate as a slave, and what other president’s great grandfather decapitated a pirate with an axe.
Boston in the Golden Age of Piracy
- Make sure to check out Part 1 of Boston in the Golden Age of Piracy.
- A sympathetic profile of Black Sam Bellamy.
- In May 1999, National Geographic detailed how treasure hunters found the wreck of the Whidah and Black Sam’s lost gold.
- See artifacts and treasure from the Whidah at this Cape Cod museum.
- The story of John Julian, the former pirate who was sold as a slave.
- The record of John Fillmore’s astonishing arrival in Boston after defeating the pirate Captain John Phillips.
- John Fillmore’s own memoir is below.
- How the pirate Ned Low indirectly gave Ben Franklin his start in public life.
- More on Ben Franklin’s role in publishing the New England Courant after the dustup over Ned Low.
- A record of William Fly’s execution and gibbeting on Nixes Mate.
- Marcus Rediker on William Fly and the genealogy of pirate customs.
This Week in Boston History
- Delegates from the Micmac and St Johns tribes arrive in Watertown to negotiate the first treaty signed by the independent US, July 10, 1776.
- Babe Ruth makes his big league debut with the Red Sox, July 11, 1914.
- Patriots raid Long Island in Boston Harbor, burning hay and exchanging fire with British Regulars, July 12, 1775.
- Abigail Adams takes the entire family to be inoculated against smallpox, July 13, 1776. (More on smallpox inoculation in Episode 2.)
- The 11th Massachusetts Volunteers, known as the Minutemen of ’61, are discharged from the army after serving throughout the Civil War, July 14, 1865.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson addresses commencement at Harvard Divinity, July 15, 1838.
- The USS Constitution begins the legendary “Great Chase,” in which she will outrun a squadron of British warships, July 16, 1812.