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Stede Bonnet, the Gentleman Pirate

2013-05-01 | 🔗

In 1717, Stede Bonnet left his family and became a pirate. Despite having no seafaring experience, Bonnet's brief career as a pirate was eventful, including a stint aboard Blackbeard's ship and raids along the Atlantic coast of North America.

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This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
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common below and walk into the pond can name Tracy being well spent, and today we have our thing: that's come up on the package before which is privacy, but we're going to talk about a pirate that doesn't always get a lot of play in history and retailing keep vomit, who is often referred to as the gentleman pirate right. This was a pirate that that I have about, because I grew up in North Carolina and if you grow up, Carolina often hear a lot about pirates yeah and he his career. You know intersected with North Carolina many times, and so he is often heard about there and in some of the go museums they. But it's like the further inland you get from North Carolina, the less. Unless you hear about em he had a very short career and piracy and it was really out of character. for him. He was a retired military man, even though he was quite young,
and then he sort of seemingly suddenly left his family to pursue this life of piracy and historians have theorize about what caused this sums could have actually been a mid life crisis of some sort it has been the result of financial issues then brought about by a mental break, and, what's really interesting, is it historians actually time to black beard, but bonnet often left out of the accounts of it of black beard happenings. He's just sort of mentioned in passing, but here really fascinating because he had this educated demeanor and he was very stylish and earned him. This nickname the gentlemen pirate bond wasn't born in sixteen eighty. In Barbados, his Grandfather was one of Barbados is first english settlers and he was actually orphaned as a child, even though he was born to a good family. He was not without difficulty.
But he inherited a four hundred acres states that was managed for him by a guardian until he reached adulthood, human Mary Allenby, who was also from a wealthy plantation family in seventeen o nine, for that was when he was about twenty one, and he retired from military life run a sugar plantation in Barbados any spend a little less than a decade after leaving the military, Dana making and go at family life and running the plantation, but that was all he could handle, apparently in a general history of the pirates from their first rise and settlement of the island of Providence to the present time, which was written by Captain Charles Johnson and sometimes attributed to Daniel, the foe and first, was in seventeen. Twenty four it is written of bonnet I believe the temptation of any man to follow such a course of wife from the condition of his circumstances. It was very surprising to everyone to hear
the majors enterprise and the island, where he lives and and ass. He was generally esteemed and honoured before he broke out into open acts of piracy, for he was afterwards, rather pitied then condemned so, The time during the seventeen teens, it really was not unheard of for people to turn to piracy in formation or in a bid to fight the establishment and the growing gap between the rich and the poor bonnet was an educated man from a good family. So initially does seem dream of incongruous to think of him in those terms, but there are some clues about why he actually may have changed the course of his life historians have suggested that he was probably a supporter of James Stuart as king of England, and defence of rebellion against the German born George, the first so Jacobite. Politics may have played a part in that decision in its decision to become a pirate.
is also worth noting that bonnet borrowed about seventeen hundred pounds, which is equivalent of roughly four hundred thousand dollars today around seventeen seventeen, so it possible that he was having financial troubles. Are the plantation wasn't going? Well, although it also will he wanted the money to start pirate enterprise? He's gonna loan, you money to start a pirate villa, you didn't tell people say she was doing, On a more sad note, his first born son died as a baby. You, which some believed you have catalyzed a mental break, he was also said to of it have experienced some quote discomforts. He found in a married state. so in other words farm historians, they arise that he was bad so much that he ran away to be a pirate. So his start in the world of piracy is really unusual. He, actually had his ship. He called revenge built,
fitted with cannons and the local Barbados shipyard any started that around seventeen. Sixteen call and wondered? Who is the author of the book? The republic of Pirates posits bonnet likely, told people, the ship was engine intended for a legitimate privateering plan, I know to some people. Privateering and piracy have sort of become a little bit interchangeable, but there is a need of difference there. So just in case you do not know distinction is that privateers are acting on behalf of the governing nation, while pie don't really answer to anybody, but their methods are Virtually identical in many cases, which has kind of fuel confusion of the interchange villainy of those words, and in any case, instead of contracting with the government bonds made a night departure on the ship revenge in April of seventeen seventeen and under cover of night. He had he headed toward North America calling himself Captain Edwards, and this is
It's time to mention that body no knowledge about seafaring. He was really sort of a land lubber and So it's unusual and bizarre just kind of feeds that whole image of him as one of those like what. Why did you do this? You are making a really rash decision, even though he clearly had planned ahead to some degree this also unusual in that most pirates will start their careers in piracy by common during another vessel. They would steal somebody help the ship, but he went, and why are you financed and pay for everything himself or maybe, with this loan from before? Yeah first headed for the Virginia Coast and he actually successfully took several ships, but it I, the seventy man on his crew that really should get the credit for that initial success, because some of them were pretty experience pirates and it's unlikely that he really had
much in the way of leadership skills, since he didn't know seafaring and had never been pirating before. the revenge than headed to New York and took a sloop that had been headed for the West Indies, and they landed a group of men Gardner's island, which you may remember from our getting garlic episode. Where are they? actually bought provisions, instead of stealing them again kind of fuel image of him is something other than a gentleman that he's ignore. Let's go buy things instead of this plundering for what we need. The beginning. In August of that same year, there were still in seventeen. Seventeen captain, Edwards and the revenges crew attacked a number of vessels neared the Charleston Harbor, but after exploits. They are culminated in setting fire to sleep in the North Carolina inlet, which he apparently did become. A fan of setting fire to ships after he had taken up
Bought it in his crew kind of could decide what they wanted to do for their next course of action, and they eventually made their way south to Honduras, which Wear black beard enters the tale because on it wasn't really experienced and maritime affairs he would usually yield to others. So when he fell into company with Edward Teach, also known as black beard, while he was in Honduras, the sperience and hardened teat easily came the alpha mail in their relationship here, but crew joined black beards and bonnet kind of became a superfluous figure. Rather rapidly bonnet had been recovering from injuries at the time after about encounter with the spanish worship, and he also lost some of his crew. He apparently agreed to this situation thing. It was a temporary set up like oh you'll just handle things while I'm not feeling well right back there,
something else in mine, he saw bonnets weakness and decided to seize command of the revenge bond spent his time on black beard ship without any thing to do, while black beards first mate ran the revenge and while the relationship seem to be friendly enough bonnet realized, he was basically a captive and he became kind of depressed a melancholy see open. We told the crew that he was unhappy and that he had tired of the pirate life and that he would really like to start a new life in Spain or Portugal, because The quote ashamed to see the face of any english man again. I just I have to reject here that if I were being held prisoner on black beard. Ship I don't know that I would go around saying that I was tired of the pirate life openly to people. yeah but accounts kind of payment, as though he was sort of endeared to the man in this didn't make them. think any well of him, like they almost sort of loved him more for it. In
the various telling of it. So, whether those true or not, I don't know, but I thought it was interesting and While these two were sailing quote together, but I mean they were quickly in the same place, but not really partners. This is Black beard actually took the frigate La Concord and then christened it to be Queens revenges, his famous flagship, on June tenth seventeen eighteen, the queen answer, then ran aground topsail inlet, which is now known as Beaufort Inlet. There is actually some debate over whether this was accidental or if teach was trying to break up four hundred men under him. He can. I recognise that the winds were changing for pirates and that may be running in a big pack was not smart, but again. This is a matter of some historical debate, teachers and accomplished sailor, so It would be a little unusual for him to be caught off, guard and run aground, but at the same time anything possible so
we should have that aside. So, while the queen's revenge is run aground Bonnet the Bath North Carolina he wanted to take harden that had been offered by the king, the king Proclamation had come out on September. The fifth seventeen seventeen and stated that pirates surrendering to authorities quote should have his gracious, pardon. when bonnet returned to the ship. He found it teach head, stripped the revenge and abandoned more than two dozen crew members on a small island. The stream of crew members had believed they were doomed to die. So it's likely that bonnets arrival was really quite welcome. So at this point having accepted the pardon bonnets slate was clean. He invited all the abandoned men to join him, refitted the revenge and renamed the Royal James. His play was to fail to Saint Thomas and seek out a privateering commission, but they never
We need it to Saint Thomas, no idea. The crew that he had invited to join him were all on board with his privateering plan, but as they are, preparing to set sail a boat had come up against them, meaning adjacent to them that to sell apples insider to the men, actually inform them that black beard and a small crew of eighteen or twenty men, or it ok. Gimlets. They were having a big party which is famous in its own right, so the black beard the story, but immediately acted upon this information and went in pursuit of teach because he was still kind of smarting from the way things went down. This up. Stuff you missed in history, glances brought. You buy Norton three sixty with lifelong let's just say your shopping online with your smartphone, I do it all the time they sure feels like your personal info is right there in your hand, but that's not all the case, because, as soon as you hit submit your personal-
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Is always that guy who joined your game, He never passes the rock he, instantly bricks theories and who can We have you and then put his hands up and say no foul, no foul, with Geico its ease, the switch and save on car insurance? No, need fake, an ankle sprain because you're absolutely exhausted. So which in save with Geiger it's almost better than sports after four days of looking for teach with no success may instead headed not to Saint Thomas, but to Virginia so it seems that have resolved to go. Legit was not really that's wrong no him in July, or seventeen eighteen. They actually took provisions which they were desperate for from another ship that they encountered, but they didn't want the act to be recorded as piracy, so in return they gave quote eight or ten casks of rice and an table in lieu thereof, so they kind of like that. We want to make this fair, even though we kind of raided you, but or or not
If we just need stuff next the major who was now going by the name. Captain Thomas and his crew encountered a sloop off of Cape Henry alluded her for liquor bonnet sent. a man over to the sloop theoretically to take care of the ship, but maybe to make some kind of a deal, but they joined. through and sailed away with them and at this point somewhere around this time, bonnet just sort of through our caution to the wind and when first back into a life of piracy, he really abandon the whole concept of privateering. The royal James then made its way up and down the Atlantic Coast taking and plundering vessel after vessel at the. The July seventeen eighteen Bonnet have failed to the Cape fear River, where he and his crew found themselves stuck for repairs, The royal James was terribly leaky and it needed to be fixed to remain seaworthy. So it's sad for nearly two months. While the work was done, which is alone
I am for a vote to just sit there, especially when it is about full of criminals. so in order reach the Council of South Carolina that a pirate was green t, fear, Colonel William Rat set out to find and capture bonnet and red had under his command to ships the Henry and the scene. It onset, we're twenty six. Seventeen eighteen threats to sloops ran aground while headed up the cape, your river while they were getting back on flute via its part, found them and the crew. Man three continues to take the shifts. The pirates now who they were attempting to take, but realized quickly and turned around to deliver a report. The bonnet and bonnet was incensed by this that night, he pen the letter to the governor of Carolina that set of Two sloops had been sent against him by that governor and, if Bonnet got clear of those, he sleeps, he was gonna burn and destroy. Every single vessel coming and going out of South Carolina is basically
you better hope you witness, because if you down- and I find out directly behind it quickly. Gonna ruin your life. next day september- twenty seventh, seventeen eighteen- a battle ensued that lasted for hours at one Both red ships and bonnets ship were run aground in the shallow water as they tried to maneuver, and there was trash talking from the pirates to the colonels crews, both If we're horribly damaged. It was really everything that you would expect to see in a Hollywood blockbuster about pirates but eventually red sloop was the first to float and as his command was about to deliver the finishing blow to the pirate ship by sent up a flag of truth and his crew surrendered themselves as prisoners. So dress, shocking that real quiet they they all surrendered, the Henry lost ten men and had fourteen wounded and the scene and lost two men and had four wounded. Two of their aside from their wounds, not long after colonel right,
then set sail from cape fear with his captives on September thirtieth than he arrived in what was called Charles town at the time, but is Charleston now on October. Third, I'm not till her fifth bonnets crew was placed in a watch house that was guarded by the militia. These there wasn't an actual prison. They could hold them bonnet entered the custody of the marshal at his house two other crew members were eventually move to the marshals house. Just a few days later, they were detained to be important in terms of evidence and testimony for the trial on October. Twenty four bonnet and one of the other men. He was named Harriet escaped the third man. Abortion refused to go with them, rumours of incompetency and bribery in relation to the escape immediately started to circulate the governor, offered a reward of seven hundred pounds to the person who captured the fugitives and they turned. colonel red who
pursuing them, in addition to other people after the reward was the one that we captured Bonnet and Harriet was actually killed during the pursuit he was shot. to twenty Eightth trials of the crew began in Charlestown before Judge trot all. But for what found guilty and sentenced to death, and on Saturday November, eighth, seventeen eighteen, the guilty men were all executed at white Point, which is near Charleston for we're tenth steed bonnets trial began it last two days and he was found guilty. He attacked to share some of the blame, the black beard, but that was real. You know it was obvious that he had willingly participated in a lot of these activities in the chief justice of speech, pronouncing bonnet sentence. He said, while tallying the majors many acts of piracy, to mention the many acts of piracy you committed before, for which, if Europe
for man was never so authentic, yet you must expect to answer for them before God. His speech goes and for many many pages of the seventeen twenty four quote. General history of pirates, You can read my mind because we willing to it in our shoulders. Also in the chief this speech. There is a lot of talk about. Not only was he a pirate but he was also a murderer and it was a lot of the wrath of this coming for you, he was so incense that this man had been pardoned and then went back to this life and did a lot of the things he really was, not short of breath when it came to condemnation in that speech,. And bonnet was executed by hanging on December tenth of seventeen eighteen, and he was only thirty at that point and he had spent less than two years living a life of a pirate. So after his what may have been a mental break, you kind of
Burned it out, he just got it and then with no more so he kind of did the with fast. I young thing in the seventh hundred right. In my imagination, I feel like he was going for Hansel low and wound up his Tobias UK yeah. still sort of our beloved, which is the interesting part of it. if only beloved by asking gay has is true in sense, fear that The story of steel bonnet, which is a brief but fascinating life, is applied, yeah a kind of from the Imo pretenders perspective, since he kind of buys his way into the world right. I feel like it's, the eighteenth century version of buying a shiny sports car and then going on a cross country spiraea of crime. and, as I said at the top of the park, as there are historians who have likened to his mid life crisis, but hopefully meaner mostly by crazy.
Dont end quite so dramatically, but now to talk about the history of midlife crises, because that seems to me like a very modern invention to bestow upon a pirate. I concur, for we can put on the list for future podcast I believe you also have some way. I do. This email came from our listener Kelly Joe, and it is about happy birthday and she says I ladys. I enjoyed your happy birthday podcast and wanted to draw up a quick note with a story get a university in my office. Like many offices has a tradition of celebrating staff birthdays with take and rendition of happy birthday. Past year I had a graduate assistance could learn who was from China and unconvinced birthday. We of course sang her happy birthday. out of curiosity, I asked her if there was a happy birthday type song in China. Much to my
prize. She broke into a song in Mandarin, said to the exact tune of happy birthday. Little did I know that the two cross cultural borders as well, thanks for your come, if I guess so. I love that sorry Kaliko and that's one of those things that I it we even talk about how it's been published in many languages
for some reason. If it's not like a Germanic, a romance language, it seems really almost startling me when the standard happy birthday soon gets used right, especially since in a lot of other cultures that this scale for music is entirely different from the one. You were happy birthday, yes, and when I read this, it reminded me of a restaurant that we have here in ITALY, and that is a really fantastic, the enemies, restaurant and, if you ve ever been there when they celebrated at birthday, they do this really interesting, recording that they play through the loudspeakers in the restaurant, and it starts out like the standard happy birthday, but then it with Simba some whole other song and thus their standard. I've been there several times when they ve done. It is always that, and I always mean to ask them if that's the normal way, that they would sing happy birthday. Vietnam area, that is a special recording that they just think is fine. But then. forgetting get distracted by my delicious desert
I won't find out and if we have any listeners that are vietnamese or really familiar with the enemies culture and can answer that question you're free. Yes, we also have lots of people who went up with awesome, other alternatives to happy birthday, honour Facebook Wall we reposted some of them, but not all. Yes, my personal favorite still something you're the birthday birthday or the birthday boy or girl a low its song. But I will not say no. If you would like to write to us happy birthday stories or anything else, you may do so at history pie cast at discovery, dot com. You can also connected us on Twitter, missed in history on Facebook, at these put dot com, slash history, class stuff on Tumblr, at missed in history, that tumblr dot com and you know, find us on Pinterest. Everyone to learn more about what we talked about to day. You can go to our website and taken the word. Piracy in the search bar and you will get now pirates what I want Iris Marty. Pan
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