Most Famous Pirate Ships

Pirate Ships: In May 1694, while stationed aboard the privateer Charles II off the coast of Spain, Henry Avery plotted a mutiny that would launch his new and short-lived career as a pirate. Following the successful takeover, Avery, who was a former Royal Navy midshipman, renamed the ship the Fancy and set out with his newly liberated crew to seek a fortune.

Pirate Ship Fancy

Avery steered the Fancy, which boasted nearly 50 guns and a crew of 150, to the island of Johanna off the Cape of Good Hope. There, the ship was cleaned and restructured to increase her speed.

Most Famous Pirate Ships

Avery and his crew terrorized ships in the Indian Ocean until late 1695, when they set sail for the Bahamas, enormous fortune in tow, for early retirement.

Pirate Ship Adventure Galley – Captain Kidd

The Adventure Galley was a specially designed galley-warship weighing over 284 tons, equipped with 34 cannons and 100 skillful crewmembers. The ship was given to famous pirate/privateer Captin Kidd by The King’s officers for attacks on pirates and French East Indian Co. ships in the Eastern Seas.

The biggest sea-victory of this pirate ship was in January 1698 against an Armenian ship, Quedah Merchant, the treasure ship that belonged to the British East India Company. After that battle, Captain Kidd replaced The Adventure Galley with Quedah as his flagship.

Captain Kidd
Captain Kidd

He left The Adventure Galley behind ordering her to be burnt because she was already rotten. Kidd wanted to capture a giant treasure ship called the Quedagh Merchant.

After a terrible battle, Kidd and his crew took over the ship and captured the greatest pirate treasures ever! Little did Kidd know, but most of the treasure he had stolen belonged to some very powerful people. He was captured and sentenced to die by hanging.

Pirate Ship Edward Teach (Blackbeard)

Edward Teach, also known as Blackbeard, was the most famous pirate in history. He was a very mysterious man and not very much is known about his life. He got his nickname because of his long, black beard that he wore in braids. He was also known for having many pistols strapped to his chest to be ready for battle.

Elizabethan Pirate Ships
Elizabethan Pirate Ships

Even though Blackbeard is the most famous pirate, his pirate “career” only lasted about 2 years. During these 2 years, however, Blackbeard attacked many ships and killed many people. He was eventually killed in a battle in 1718. Legend has it that he was hit with “5 pistol balls and 20 cutlass wounds” before he fell to his death.

Pirate Ship CSS Alabama

Though technically a warship, the most destructive Confederate raider in history is worthy of a mention here. According to Stephen Fox’s biography of Alabama’s captain, Ralph Semmes, the ship’s destructive reputation once led the New York Herald to refer to Semmes as “A Pirate on the High Seas.”

Pirate Ships

Built-in 1862 by Henry Laird, whose family’s company also built 40 ships for the Royal Navy, Alabama was designed for speed and deception.

The ship was 220 feet long and 32 feet wide with room for 350 tons of coal. Alabama’s forward pivot gun fired 100-pound shells and the wheel of the ship was inscribed with a Confederate motto: “Help Yourself and God Will Help You.”

Some other Famous pirate Ships Include:

  • Captain John Gow’s merchant ship – Revenge(former Caroline);
  • John Rackham’s sloop – William;
  • Edward England’s galleys – Fancy, Royal James(former Pearl) and Victory;
  • Bartholomew Roberts’ ships – Royal Fortune, Great Fortune & Great Ranger;
  • Thomas Tew’ sloops – Liberty and the Amity;
  • Charles Vane’s sloop – Ranger.

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