Outlander and North Carolina
BRAVE THE NEW WORLD
Pirates - ARGH!!
There have been questions on some of the Facebook fan pages about how Stephen Bonnet can escape from being hung and then come and go in coastal towns. This post shares information about pirates in colonial America, specifically to the mid Atlantic region (Virginia and the Carolinas).
The golden age of piracy was long over by the time Stephen Bonnet roamed the coast of colonial America. This age ended with the beheading of Edward Teach, otherwise known as Blackbeard, and the hanging of Stede Bonnet (see image). In Books and Writers Community, Diana has posited that Stephen Bonnet may be the illegitimate descendent of Stede Bonnet.
Even with the golden age in the past, piracy still played a role in North Carolina history. In addition to Blackbeard and Stephen Bonnet, there were more than 100 pirates, some of whom were women, roaming the Carolinas and Virginia coast lines.
Pirates came to coastal North Carolina after being chased out of the West Indies by the British. They liked the North Carolina coast as it afforded areas for ship maintenance, a place to await unwary prey and to hide from pursuit by the insignificant military force of the colony.
Even with its advantages the Carolina coast also had its navigation hazards to sea faring as many inlets were shallow with shifting bottoms. In fact, the North Carolina Outer Banks are called the Graveyard of the Atlantic due to the number of ship wrecks located in the area.
Some North Carolinians complained to officials about pirates but many came to realize Pirates could play a role in commerce by selling their captured goods at a cheaper price to merchants. Merchants and colonial officials would even enter into agreements with pirates.
In the Outlander books it is noted that Stephen Bonnet had home ports in Edenton and Ocracoke while frequently visiting Wilmington and New Bern. Locals welcomed Stephen as he was charming and made them money. Even though there was a cost.
Today there are museums where one can view Blackbeard’s ship “Queen Anne’s Revenge” and feature Blackbeard and Stede Bonnet. North Carolina also has festivals celebrating pirates. The nickname for East Carolina University is Pirates.
Outlander Tours NC merges the history of colonial North Carolina with the fiction of Diana Gabaldon's Outlander book series and the STARZ Outlander series where Season 4 adapts 'The Drums of Autumn' in which Jamie, Claire and others arrive and settle in North Carolina. Just as Jamie and Claire, you will explore North Carolina from the coastal plains, through the Piedmont and into the Blue Ridge.
Join us on one of our 2019 tours where we visit locations featured in the books and series. Itineraries include many of North Carolina Scottish games or historical reenactments.