Blackbeard! LbNA # 16121
|Owner||Runs for Beer|
|Placed Date||Jun 25 2005|
|Location||James Island, SC|
ALERT: Blackbeard has been recarved and re-planted (July 2009)
(carved by Downhill Dad of 123 Family)
MEASUREMENTS: 6-feet, 5 inches, 220 pounds.
MARITAL STATUS: Married 14 times. Never divorced.
The pirate Blackbeard is perhaps the most notorious of the sea robbers who plagued shipping lanes off North America and throughout the Caribbean in the early-eighteenth century- an era commonly referred to as the Golden Age of Piracy. His name originally, it seems was Edward Drummond. He is seldom known by that name, for after he became a pirate he began calling himself Edward Teach. He is reported to have served as a privateer during Queen Anne's War (1701 - 1714) and turned to piracy sometime after the war's conclusion.
Blackbeard appeared to many as the Devil personified. Long, black hair covered his head and face, curling into small loops which, in time of battle, he stuck lighted matches into so as to light up his face and dark eyes. With a bandolier holding six pistols slung over his equally hairy chest, it seemed as though he might have stepped directly from the pits of hell.
From the West Indies to New England, Blackbeard's mere twenty-seven month career earned him immortality as the most diabolic villain in the New World. In November 1717, he and his crew captured the French slave ship La Concorde near the island of Martinique and converted it into their flagship, renaming it the Queen Anne’s Revenge. She was in the style of a Dutch flute, which had been a popular design for European merchant ships in the early 1700's. Not content with the 26 cannons she was already carrying, Blackbeard increased the number to 40.
In May 1718, after spending the winter searching for prizes in the Caribbean, Blackbeard decided to blockade the harbor of Charleston, South Carolina. He stretched his vessels across the harbor and made demands of the town not for money or supplies but medicine. The blockade wore on for weeks, and without firing a shot, Blackbeard slowly received what he came for.
Blackbeard fell into sailing the North Carolina and Virginia coast looking for ships to plunder. Two of his favorite retreats were Bath Town and Ockracoke Island, North Carolina. He had settled on Ockracoke Island, near Cape Hatteras, as his outpost. It was here that Lieutenant Maynard of the Royal Navy found Blackbeard anchored at his favorite spot on the south side of the island. His ships crept up on Blackbeard's and a fierce battle broke out between them. Both sides took heavy casualties, and eventually Blackbeard was killed in battle, overwhelmed by the training and firepower of the Royal Navy. Blackbeard's head was cut off and his body thrown overboard where legend has that it swam around the ship several times before sinking. The skull was displayed as a trophy on the sloop’s bowsprit on Maynard's arrival in Bath and in Virginia.
Begin your search for Blackbeard and the Queen Anne’s Revenge at a park off Riverland. Ask for a map at the gatehouse (there's a $1/person fee). Proceed to Osprey Point and park in first lot on left. Find where the blue/green trail crosses Osprey and go left into woods; bear left on blue/green. Follow past buildings on right; take green when blue green splits. Follow until you cross the road. Apprx. 90 steps or just as the path turns right, look right for a large curved, falled tree trunk. Just behind it there is a horizontal tree with 3 or 4 upward growing branches. 'Round back, under and covered with debris and pieces of wood. Please replant fully covered.
Follow blue/green back to Osprey. Cross road and veer left onto blue/orange and follow to Splash Zone parking lot. Stay on blue/orange left around lake; follow past boat rentals and don’t stop to feed the alligators! Pass behind Splash Zone and then look for a gravel road on the left. Stand facing the two gray electrical boxes and look behind for a 3 ft. tall stump. Carefully walk to stump (looking out for spiders!) Lying behind the stump is its former upper trunk. Look under right side edge of fallen trunk, near stump for the flagship.
As always, be wary of others when retrieving, these tend to be busy trails.