New Providence Pirate Haven - Nassau, Bahamas
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member ChapterhouseInc
N 25° 04.153 W 077° 27.017
18R E 252832 N 2774852
Quick Description: A hidden gem along the seemingly long shore of Nassau. This position provided a refuge and lookout position over the bay. Some pirates thought to frequent the islands were: Barrow, Hornigold, Vane, Rackhamand Blackbeard himself.
Location: Bahamas
Date Posted: 4/5/2012 10:40:00 PM
Waymark Code: WME5CP
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member Scooter Bill
Views: 6

Long Description:
Although not historically proven, it has been told that the Lucayan Indians were the original inhabitants of the islands and resided in these caves.

Later in time, it has been suggested that Pirates and thrir bounty found refuge from the law by also hiding in these caves.

Today, the caves are occupied by the 'Buffy Flower Bat' (Brophylia Sezekomi) commonly known as the fruit bat, and indigenous to the Bahama Islands.

Please Respect this National Treasure.
from Wikipedia:
The city is located on the island of New Providence, which functions much like a business district. Nassau is the site of the House of Assembly and various judicial departments and was considered historically to be a stronghold of pirates.

Nassau was formerly known as Charles Town; it was burned to the ground by the Spanish in 1684, but later rebuilt and renamed Nassau in 1695 in honor of the Dutch Stadtholder (Stadhouder, Dutch) and later also King of England, Scotland and Ireland, William III from the Dutch House of Orange-Nassau. In 1703 Spanish and French allied forces briefly occupied Nassau.

By 1713, the sparsely settled Bahamas had become a pirate haven for pirate chieftains Thomas Barrow and Benjamin Hornigold. They proclaimed Nassau a pirate republic, establishing themselves as "governors", and were joined by Charles Vane, Calico Jack Rackham, and the infamous Edward Teach, known as "Blackbeard", along with women pirates such as Anne Bonny and Mary Read.

In 1718, the British sought to regain control of the islands and appointed Captain Woodes Rogers as Royal governor. He successfully clamped down on the pirates, reformed the civil administration and restored commerce. Rogers cleaned up Nassau and rebuilt the fort, even going as far as using his own money to try to overcome problems.

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It is a well known fact that Nassau and New Providence itself were considered to be a "pirates proven" as declared by the Governor of Cuba in 1684.

The popularity of The Bahamas by pirates was due to the numerous islands and islets with complex shoals and channels providing places for them to hide while waiting to plunder ships. Moreover the islands were within and close to many well traveled shipping lanes such as the Windward Passage. Therefore The Bahamas quickly became favoured to sit and wait passing merchant ships to plunder.

The Bahamas became the ideal facility for pirates to lurk about, surprise, attack and then escape. Preying upon passing ships of any nation safe in the waters from reprisal and the ineffective government. Grisly tales are told of the Bahamian pirates who lacked even a thief's honor, as did the buccaneers.

The Spanish galleons, which were weighed down with riches, were easy plunder for the pirates. The pirates could then hide their booty in the caverns of the many islands of The Bahamas or buried it there.

After the Spanish raids of 1684, New Providence remained empty with no permanent settlers until 1686. At which point colonists from Jamaica and from Bermuda ventured back and built a fort. They made a council of 12 in 1687. Pirates were a great concern and efforts vain to keep them from watering in the islands. The likes of John Thurber, Thomas Wooley and Christopher Goffe were particularly difficult to keep out especially in that many of the settlers were not above reproach.

Because of the stronghold of the pirates upon New Providence and the ravaging of the Spanish galleons by the likes of Blackbeard, Henry Morgan and Calico Jack, the Spanish army wiped out Nassau in 1695. But within two years privateers revisited to rebuild the capital for similar purposes.

Calico Jack met Anne Bonny in New Providence and convinced her to leave her husband and run off with him. She dressed as a man and worked as a fellow crewmember. Mary Read was also on board as a crewmember and disguised as a man. They were famed for being female pirates who performed with all the vigor and fought with the fierceness of the men in the crew. In 1720 when Woodes Rogers came to govern New Providence he formed an attack to drive the pirates out. They verged upon Calico Jack's ship while the he and the rest of the crew were drunk and cowering in the hold. It was Anne and Mary who fought off the attackers but alas they lost the battle. Calico Jack was sentenced and hung. Anne and Mary were tried as well as the rest of the crew for piracy and sentenced to death. However claiming pregnancy Anne and Mary were able to avoid immediate hanging. Mary died in prison and Anne gave birth to her child and was granted a reprieve after which she was never heard of again.

He was a menace for only two years but in that time plundered so many vessels that he became the largest pirate nuisance. He didn't gain his own ship until 1716 and became so well know for being cut throat his own men feared him. While he lived in Nassau fellow pirates voted him as the Privateers' Republic magistrate. He was said to have had fourteen wives and to have filled his ship (a captured merchantman) with guns and cutthroats.

After the 1720's Woodes Rodgers did eventually clean up the privateers of Nassau and New Providence.

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Site Description: Cave

Date of Pirate Activity (Estimated): 1600

Reference Web-link or Book Title:

Site Admission (If needed): 0

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Additional Information (optional):
A plaque mentions pirates, and there is a pirate museum in town.

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stinger503 visited New Providence Pirate Haven - Nassau, Bahamas 7/22/2012 stinger503 visited it
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