Thursday, March 05, 2009

The High Seas with pirates ,buccaneers,privateers

We call them Corsairs, Buccaneers, Thieves and Pirates. They were the ones who attacked merchant ships in the high seas.There always were pirates on the seas just as there will always be thieves and mercenaries. We figure the pirates were at their peak from 1650 to 1725 with the majority of them being in Antilles. The Manche, Mediteranean, Madagascar island, Indian Ocean and China Sea were the areas most freqented by the pirates. Acadie situated in the center of the war between France and England was often victims of english pirate attacks and one of the principle haven of French Corsairs in North America. It is in the golden age era of pirates especially a short while before the treaty of Utrecht that the activities of piracy were more intense in Acadie. Baptiste, Guyon Brothers,Lamothe Cadillac,d'Iberville,Rodrigue,Deny brothers,Saint Castin sons,and Morpain are the most well known of the french buccaneers in those years.
What were these pirates and corsairs looking for? The best prizes in Antilles was gold, silver and jewelry. Slaves were important prizes. In the north Atlantic in times of war the most important prizes were arms, guns, canons and powder. Often they took corn, barrels of flour,sugar, molasses and rum ,sometimes wood,fish and furs.The following is from SHA (Societe Historique acadienne). regarding Baptiste the pirate;
With his brigatine in the trimester ,he takes ten English buildings. March 10 1697 three leagues from Canso Bay in Maine, the Acadians meet eight fishing boats which had 28 men. Baptiste and his crew who had only eaten shellfish gathered along the shore, decided to attack the fishing boats to get some food. The boats were all lined one along side the other, and Baptiste decided to attack during the night of March 10th or 11. His two vessels attacked two boats while they were asleep. They had no problem but the noise woke the other boats who retaliated with lots of vigor. The privateers bravely boarded the boats and fought like lions, and became masters of six boats .The other two boats saw the results of the attack and fled like the wind. There were seven Englishmen killed, including five Captains of the boats, four injured and twenty prisoners. Baptiste received three wounds, and eight of his men were injured but no one seriously hurt.
Baptiste did many raids until 1697 when he was made prisoner in Boston. He was treated very cruel, they even tried to poison him. Freed in 1698 he continued attacking the English Vessels who were fishing illegally. In 1702 he was captured again until 1706. They wanted to hang him as a Pirate.He was later traded for the release of Reverend John Williams who was captured by the Native Americans in a raid.
Well this is it for today, thank you for the visit , do stop by soon ( I really need my cuppa coffee) grin.
Have a great day

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