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Samuel Bellamy (1689 - 1717)

May 19, 2012
Samuel Bellamy (1689 - 1717)
  • Samuel Bellamy, later to be called "Black Bellamy", was known to be one of the most active freebooters.

    As legend has it that he was a young English sailor, who traveled to the new world colonies to seek his fortune. He found a wealthy sponsor to finance an expedition South, to search for sunken Spanish treasure. This proved to be unsuccessful, and Bellamy returned home `empty-handed`, and married. He soon however, left his wife and family behind in a town near Canterbury to sail the seas once more.

    As many notorious pirates before him, Bellamy served as an apprentice with Benjamin Hornigold, who was known for his generosity to prisoners, and reluctance to plunder English ships. Bellamy was elected as captain when Hornigold was deposed. Bellamy proved to be a most successful pirate, mainly in the West Indies.

    He was known to entertain his crew with flowery orations, of which he considered himself quite the master. The concerned for the `well-being` of his prisoners, but he favored his crew’s `well-being` above all else, not to evoke any sinister feelings among them.

    His growing carrier came to an abrupt end in April 1717, off Cape Cod, when his fleet was hit by an intense storm, completely capsizing and destroying his ship, the Whydah. Two men survived this tragedy, one disappeared in history, while the other, Thomas Davis, lived on to pass down the intense account of the shipwreck to Cape Cod folklore.