Blackbeard Quick Fact #5: Blockade of Charleston, SC

In the days leading up to the release of Blackbeard’s Lost Treasure (April 28,2016 – Franklin/Kerr Press), I will give my readers–or anyone with interest in the legendary pirate–some notes I took as part of my research for the novel.

These notes will lay the background for Blackbeard, many of which did not make it into the novel. For the items that made it into the novel, don’t worry, there will be no spoilers. You can read all the facts here. 

In this post, I tell you about one event for which Blackbeard became famous for.

Blackbeard Quick Fact #5

In May of 1718 after spending the winter in the Caribbean, Blackbeard took his flotilla to Charleston, SC, and blocked the harbor for five or six days. His vessels would attack any ship trying to come in or leave. He effectively shut down commerce to one of the biggest ports in Colonial America.

The reason? Apparently, during their reign of terror the previous winter, they brought some gifts with them back to America: syphilis.

Blackbeard demanded medical supplies be brought to his ship to treat the STD. After several days, he received what he needed and left.

During the excavation of Blackbeard’s flagship, The Queen Anne’s Revenge, off the coast of North Carolina, archaeologists recovered ‘medical tools’ from the wreckage.  For a man, these tools are very cringe-worthy.

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