Six Real-Life Pirates Who Would’ve Liked to Call Put-in-Bay Home
Savings Tip: Remember adults & kiddos, dress or talk like a Pyrate and save $1 off your round trip passenger fare aboard Miller Ferry for Put-in-Bay, any time during Pyrate Fest.
The 8th annual Put-in-Bay Pyrate Fest is nearly upon us (June 17 – June 20) and we thought it’d be fun to chat about a few notorious real-life pirates whom we thought might have enjoyed the island. Of course this is all theoretical, seeing as how most of these scallywags existed hundreds of years ago and thankfully aren’t around today — We’re pretty sure all the rum would be gone. Nonetheless, let’s have a look at which famous freebooters we could’ve seen hanging around South Bass Island.
Blackbeard or Edward Teach — Perhaps responsible for the image of pirates depicted in modern day times, Blackbeard was known for his fearsome appearance and of course, a thick black beard. He operated around the warm waters of the West Indies, which is definitely one reasons why we think he would’ve loved Put-in-Bay…in the summer of course. That being said, we’re not sure how well we would’ve navigated the Lake Erie Islands, considering he once ran his famed vessel, Queen Anne’s Revenge, aground near Charleston, South Carolina. Get the charts out and stay away from Buckeye Point Edward.
Hayreddin “Redbeard” Barbarossa — Here we go again with another “bearded” pirate, however this guy was pretty impressive. Tired of living a pirate’s life and roaming the sea with no place to call home, Redbeard just decided to start his own country called the Regency of Algiers (currently Algeria, Tunisia and part of Morocco). Yep, his own country! With 122 ships, he even once defeated the combined armies of Venice, the Vatican, Genoa, Spain, Portugal and Malta during the battle of Preveza. Needless to say this gentleman was fearless and for that reason, we’re pretty sure Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry would’ve liked this guy — Aside from all the pirating of course.
Bartholomew “Black Bart” Roberts — For someone who was forced into a life of buccaneering, Black Bart became one of the most successful pirates of the Golden Age of Piracy. His humungous frigate, Royal Fortune, had 40 cannons mounted on her and was one of the most formidable pirate ships of all time, rivaling even well-armed navy vessels. Royal Fortune vs. U.S. Brig Niagara? Despite being outgunned by 3 cannons, we’re still taking the Niagara. “We have the enemy and they are ours!”
Anne Bonny — A fearsome independent woman who was way ahead of her time, Anne Bonny is easily one of the most famous women pirates of all time and called the pirate haven of Nassau her home. Eventually linked romantically to small time sea rover Calico Jack, she soon learned the ways of piracy and helped successfully carry out raids of Spanish commercial ships with his aid. Sadly the end came when the British Navy attacked their ship and found most of the crew to be inebriated, making for an easy takedown. Drink in moderation you two, everyone knows this.
Black Caesar — Born into slavery, this eventual marauder had to scrap his way into the steely ranks of pirates and for some time served as one of Blackbeard’s chief lieutenants. His main influx of income came from raiding ships from the Florida Keys, precisely the reason why old Black Caesar would’ve loved Put-in-Bay, they Key West of the Midwest. Caesar’s Rock, an island located just north of Key Largo, is the site of his original headquarters and named in his honor.
Benjamin Hornigold — While Blackbeard may be considered the most famous pirate of all time, this man deserves a lot of credit for teaching Blackbeard how to be a buccaneer. If that’s not cool enough, he literally started his pirating career with a canoe and eventually plateaued in power with a warship larger than most other vessels of his time. Extremely strong in loyalty to England, Hornigold however refused to attack English ships and strongly disapproved of harming captives. And we like that. Seems he would’ve much rather sat at The Boathouse or maybe the Roundhouse and just enjoyed the surroundings. You’re our favorite Benjamin.
For more details on Put-in-Bay Pyrate Fest VIII please click here.