Author Says Book on Blackbeard Will Change Pirate History
When the infamous pirate Blackbeard arrived in North Carolina in 1718, he commanded one of the most powerful pirate fleets in history. However, in a stunning reversal of fortunes, everything suddenly went wrong. Within six months, Blackbeard was cornered and killed at Ocracoke Inlet, and the only treasure found in his possession was some sugar, cocoa, cotton and a mysterious letter.
What happened during Blackbeard's last days that led to his demise? Researcher, author and filmmaker Kevin Duffus has spent 35 years researching the pirate's life. He discovered that many historical accounts about Blackbeard's last days were inaccurate, insufficiently researched, and, as it turned out, not nearly as interesting as the truth.
Duffus says the surprising information he found will change pirate history. The author's first public program, in which he will disclose this new information, will take place at the N.C. Museum of History in Raleigh Thursday, May 1, at 7 p.m. Be one of the first to hear the stunning findings revealed in his new book, "The Last Days of Black Beard the Pirate" (Looking Glass Productions, April 2008). Seating is limited, and registration is required. Call (919) 807-7846 to register. A book signing follows the program, and copies are available in the Museum Shop for $30.
Duffus will explain how Blackbeard was cornered and attacked at Ocracoke in 1718, why he tried to escape rather than fight back, and how his life might have been spared had he lived for three more weeks. He will reveal the true meaning of a mysterious letter found in the pirate's possessions.
In addition, Duffus will expose the truths behind many of the enduring myths about the notorious pirate -- his Bristol, England, birthplace; his 14 wives; the burning of fuses in his hair to frighten his victims; the countless tall tales of buried treasure and secret tunnels; and the shocking origins of the legend of his silver-plated skull used as a drinking cup by a secret society.
One revelation promises to stand out as the most amazing one. With the help of groundbreaking research by three genealogists, Duffus shares long-forgotten clues to the potential identity of Blackbeard, beginning with an age-old myth about his sister, Susannah. The conclusions are staggering and certain to be controversial.
The N.C. Museum of History's hours are Monday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday, noon to 5 p.m. Admission is free.
For more information about the museum, call (919) 807-7900 or visit ncmuseumofhistory.org.
More like this story