Later this month on the USS Yorktown at Patriots Point on Charleston Harbor, it is rumored that the ghost of the most terrifying pirate of all time, Edward Teach aka Blackbeard the Pirate, will again walk the deck of a ship on Charleston Harbor. Seems he will be here looking for something he lost in his last fight… his head.
Blackbeard famously blockaded Charles Towne (the old name of Charleston), South Carolina in May 1718. His ship, The Queen Anne’s Revenge, and a pirate flotilla of seven additional ships brought all trade to a stop, and the community was in fear of the pirates descending upon their fair city. Blackbeard captured nine ships, of which, one contained many prominent members of the Charles Towne community. He demanded not gold, but medicine from the colonial governor or all the pirates’ prisoners would be beheaded and the ships burned. The colonial governor quickly gathered the medicines in a chest and delivered them to Blackbeard. The infamous pirate kept his bargain and released his hostages, although a little lighter from loss of personal belongings including articles of clothing.
On 22 November 1718 Royal Navy Lieutenant Robert Maynard would catch Teach at Ocracoke, North Carolina, and kill him and many of his crew. Blackbeard’s body was shot no fewer than five times and cut about twenty. Lieutenant Maynard had Blackbeard’s head cut off and hung to the bowsprit of his sloop. The body was thrown overboard and legend says it swam five times around Maynard’s sloop before sinking.
From the blood of such an infamous pirate, it is possible that his ancestors have made up for his sins. Many of the Thach family of North Carolina, believe they are descendents of Edward Teach (aka Thach) and one of his descendents is Admiral John “Jimmy” Thach, United States Navy, who pioneered the famous “Thach Weave” that kept many of our fighter pilots alive at war in the Pacific during World War II.
Make this a nautical Halloween and don’t miss your chance to see Blackbeard’s skull, ghost pirates, battles and other eerie and amazing sights when “The Fighting Lady” becomes a ghost ship on October 28th-31st. Tours will begin at 7 PM and end at 11 PM. Tickets are $15 per person and a parking fee of $5 per vehicle applies. Ghost Ship Tours not recommended for children under 11. Children under 11 must be accompanied by an adult. Limited numbers each night so buy now to get your spot!