Queen Anne's Revenge

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Coordinates: 34°41′44″N 76°41′20″W / 34.69556°N 76.68889°W / 34.69556; -76.68889

Queen Anne's Revenge.JPG
Illustration of Queen Anne's Revenge published in 1736
French merchant flagFrance
Name: La Concorde
Launched: 1710 in Rochefort
Blackbeard's flagPirates
Name: Queen Anne's Revenge
Fate: Ran aground in 1718 near Beaufort Inlet, North Carolina
General characteristics
Class and type: Frigate
Tons burthen: 200 bm
Length: 31.4 m (103 ft)
Beam: 7.1 m (24.6 ft)
Sail plan: Full-rigged
Complement: 125
Armament: 44 cannons (alleged), 18 found[1]
Queen Anne's Revenge
Queen Anne's Revenge is located in North Carolina
Queen Anne's Revenge
Queen Anne's Revenge is located in the US
Queen Anne's Revenge
Nearest city Atlantic Beach, North Carolina
Area less than one acre
Built 1710
NRHP reference # 04000148[2]
Added to NRHP March 9, 2004

Queen Anne's Revenge was an early-18th-century frigate, most famously used as a flagship by the pirate Blackbeard (Edward Teach). Although the date and place of the ship's construction are unclear,[3] it is believed she was built in Bristol in 1710 and named Concord.[4] One year later she was captured by the French and renamed La Concorde de Nantes. She was captured by Blackbeard and his pirates in 1717. Blackbeard used the ship for less than a year,[5] but captured numerous prizes using her as his flagship.

In 1718, Blackbeard ran the ship aground at Beaufort Inlet, North Carolina, in the present-day Carteret County.[5] After the grounding, her crew and supplies were transferred to smaller ships. In 1996 Intersal, Inc., a private firm, discovered the remains of a vessel that was later determined to be Queen Anne's Revenge, which was added to the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.


The 200-ton vessel, originally named Concord, then La Concorde de Nantes, was a cargo and merchant vessel believed to have been built in 1710. She was captured by Blackbeard and his pirates on November 28, 1717, near the island of Martinique.[6]

Blackbeard made La Concorde into his flagship, adding cannon and renaming her Queen Anne's Revenge. The name may come from the War of the Spanish Succession, known in the Americas as Queen Anne's War, in which Blackbeard had served in the Royal Navy, or possibly from sympathy for Queen Anne, the last Stuart monarch.[7] Blackbeard sailed this ship from the west coast of Africa to the Caribbean, attacking British, Dutch, and Portuguese merchant ships along the way.

Shortly after blockading Charleston harbor in May 1718, and refusing to accept the Governor's offer of a pardon, Blackbeard ran Queen Anne's Revenge aground while entering Beaufort Inlet. A deposition given by the former captain of Adventure, David Herriot, states "Thatch's [Teach's] ship Queen Anne's Revenge run a-ground off of the Bar of Topsail-Inlet." He also states that Adventure "run a-ground likewise about Gun-shot from the said Thatch" in an attempt to kedge Queen Anne's Revenge off the bar.[8] Teach then disbanded his flotilla and escaped by transferring supplies onto the smaller sloop, Adventure. He stranded several crew members on a small island nearby, where they were later rescued by Captain Stede Bonnet. Some[9] suggest Blackbeard deliberately grounded the ship as an excuse to disperse the crew. Shortly afterward, Blackbeard did surrender and accepted a royal pardon for himself and his remaining crewmen from Governor Charles Eden at Bath, North Carolina. However, he eventually returned to piracy and was killed in combat in November 1718.[8]

Discovery and archaeological excavation of shipwreck

Intersal Inc., a private research firm, discovered the wreck believed to be Queen Anne’s Revenge QAR on November 21, 1996.[10] It was located by Intersal's director of operations, Mike Daniel, who used historical research provided by Intersal's president, Phil Masters[11][12][13] and maritime archaeologist David Moore.[14] The shipwreck lies in 28 feet (8.5m) of water about one mile (1.6 km) offshore of Fort Macon State Park (34°41′44″N 76°41′20″W), Atlantic Beach, North Carolina. Thirty-one cannons have been identified to date and more than 250,000 artifacts have been recovered.[15] The cannons are of different origins including Sweden, England and possibly France, and of different sizes as would be expected with a colonial pirate crew.[8]

Recognizing the significance of Queen Anne's Revenge, the North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources (NCDNCR), Intersal, and Maritime Research Institute (MRI) entered into a memorandum of agreement in 1998.[16] Intersal agreed to forego entitlement to any coins and precious metals recovered from the wreck site in order that all artifacts remain as one intact collection, and in order for NCDNCR to determine the ultimate disposition of the artifacts. In return, Intersal was granted media-, replica- and other rights related to an entity known as Blackbeard’s Queen Anne's Revenge Shipwreck Project;[17] MRI was granted joint artifact touring rights with NCDNCR. NCDNCR, Intersal, and Rick Allen of Nautilus Productions signed a settlement agreement[18] on October 24, 2013 connected to commercial-, replica- and promotional opportunities for the benefit of Queen Anne's Revenge. The State of North Carolina owns the wreck since it lies in state waters (within the three-mile limit).

For one week in 2000 and 2001, live underwater video of the project was webcast to the Internet as a part of the QAR DiveLive[19] educational program that reached thousands of children around the world.[20] Created and co-produced by Nautilus Productions and Marine Grafics, this project enabled students to talk to scientists and learn about methods and technologies utilized by the underwater archaeology team.[21][22]

In November 2006 and 2007, more artifacts were discovered at the site and brought to the surface. The additional artifacts appear to support the claim that the wreck is that of Queen Anne's Revenge. Among evidence to support this theory is that the cannons were found loaded. In addition, there were more cannons than would be expected for a ship of this size, and the cannons were of different makes. Depth markings on the part of the stern that was recovered point to it having been made according to the French foot measurements.[23]

By the end of 2007, approximately one third of the wreck was fully excavated. Part of the hull of the ship, including much of the keel and part of the stern post, has survived. The 1,500-pound (680 kg) sternpost was recovered in November 2007.[24][25] The North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources set up the website[26] Queen Anne's Revenge to build on intense public interest in the finds. Artifacts recovered in 2008 include loose ceramic and pewter fragments, lead strainer fragments, a nesting weight, cannon apron, ballast stones, a sword guard and a coin.[27]

Goals during the 2010 field season included staging of one of the ship’s largest main deck cannons to the large artifact holding area on site, taking corrosion readings from anchors and cannon undergoing in situ corrosion treatment, attaching aluminum-alloy anodes to the remaining anchors and cannons so as to begin their in situ corrosion treatment and continuing site excavations.[28]

In 2011, the 1.4-tonne (3,100 lb) anchor from the ship was brought to the surface along with a range of makeshift weaponry including langrage or canister shot.[29][30]

On August 29, 2011, the National Geographic Society reported that the State of North Carolina had confirmed the shipwreck as Queen Anne's Revenge, reversing a conclusion previously maintained because of a lack of conclusive evidence.[31] Specific artifacts that support this conclusion include a brass coin weight bearing the bust of Queen Anne of England, cast during her reign (1702-1714); the stem of a wine glass decorated with diamonds and tiny embossed crowns, made to commemorate the 1714 coronation of Queen Anne's successor, King George I; the remains of a French hunting sword featuring a bust that closely resembles King Louis XV, who claimed the French throne in 1715; and a urethral syringe for treating venereal diseases with a control mark indicating manufacture between 1707 and 1715 in Paris, France.[32]

On June 21, 2013, the National Geographic Society reported recovery of two cannons from Queen Anne's Revenge.[33]

On October 28, 2013, archaeologists recovered five more cannons from the wreck.[34] Three of these have been identified as iron 6-pounders manufactured at Ehrendals works in Södermanland, Sweden, in 1713. Thomas Roth, the Head of Sweden's Armament Museum Research Department, derived the origin of the iron cannons by a mark on their tubes.[35]

The 23rd of 31 cannons identified at the wreck site was recovered on October 24, 2014. The gun is approximately 56 inches (140 cm) long, weighs over 300 pounds (140 kg) and may be a sister to a Swedish gun that was previously recovered. Nine cannonballs, bar shot halves, an iron bolt and a grenado were also recovered during the 2014 field season.[36]

In January 2018, sixteen fragments of paper were identified after being recovered from sludge inside a cannon. The scraps were from a copy of the book A Voyage to the South Sea, and Round the World, Perform’d in the Years 1708, 1709, 1710 and 1711 by Captain Edward Cooke; it is likely the pages were torn from the book and used as wadding in that cannon.[37]

National Register of Historic Places

Queen Anne's Revenge was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2004. The reference number is 04000148. It is listed as owned by the state of North Carolina and located near Morehead City, North Carolina.[38] The wreck site is designated 31CR314 by the state of North Carolina.[39]

In popular culture


  1. ^ "Pirate Arms and Armament | Queen Anne's Revenge Project". www.qaronline.org. 
  2. ^ National Park Service (2010-07-09). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 
  3. ^ https://www.qaronline.org/history/ships-journey
  4. ^ http://www.thewayofthepirates.com/pirate-life/queen-annes-revenge/
  5. ^ a b Brian Handwerk (2005-07-12). ""Blackbeard's Ship" Yields New Clues to Pirate Mystery". National Geographic. Retrieved 2011-05-27. 
  6. ^ "The Pirate Ship's Journey | Queen Anne's Revenge Project". www.qaronline.org. Retrieved 2017-12-01. 
  7. ^ Republicofpirates.net
  8. ^ a b c D. Moore. (1997) "A General History of Blackbeard the Pirate, the Queen Anne's Revenge and the Adventure". In Tributaries, Volume VII, 1997. pp. 31–35. (North Carolina Maritime History Council)
  9. ^ Cordingly, David (1996). "Life Among The Pirates". London, England: Abacus. 
  10. ^ "QAR Discovered". lat3440.com. Intersal, Inc. Archived from the original on 17 July 2015. Retrieved 30 August 2015. 
  11. ^ "In Shipwreck Linked to Pirate, State Sees a Tourism Treasure". The New York Times. 
  12. ^ White, Fred A. "East Carolina Dive and Historical Recovery Team, Beaufort Inlet and Oregon Inlet Surveys, 1982 Field Reports". East Carolina Dive and Historical Recovery Team. Retrieved 14 November 2010. 
  13. ^ "Globe-trotting archaeologist finds treasure right under his feet". East Carolina University. August 19, 2013. Retrieved June 21, 2014. 
  14. ^ Gray, Nancy (February 1998). "Maps and microfilm: tools of a Blackbeard sleuth". The ECU Report. Retrieved November 22, 2011. 
  15. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on July 9, 2015. Retrieved March 27, 2015. 
  16. ^ "Queen Anne's Revenge Fact Sheet" (PDF). qaronline.org. 
  17. ^ "Blackbeard's Queen Anne's Revenge Shipwreck Project". Nautilus Productions. 
  18. ^ "Mediated Settlement Agreement". Scribd.com. 
  19. ^ Digital.ncdcr.gov
  20. ^ C Southerly and J Gillman-Bryan. (2003). "Diving on the Queen Anne's Revenge". In: SF Norton (ed). Diving for Science...2003. Proceedings of the American Academy of Underwater Sciences (22nd Annual Scientific Diving Symposium). Retrieved 2008-07-03. 
  21. ^ "Apple, QuickTime help with underwater diving trip". Macworld. 
  22. ^ "Blackbeard's Glowing Shipwreck". P3 Update. 
  23. ^ "Secrets of the Dead: Blackbeard's Lost Ship". PBS. 
  24. ^ Malcom, Corey. "The Iron Bilboes of the Henrietta Marie" (PDF). melfisher.org. The Navigator: Newsletter of the Mel Fisher Maritime Heritage Society. Retrieved 19 July 2015. 
  25. ^ Donovan, Chelsea. "Queen Anne's Revenge Artifact Found - WITN". YouTube. Retrieved 24 February 2016. 
  26. ^ qaronline.org: The Queen Anne's Revenge Shipwreck Project - Archaeological Investigations of Blackbeard's Flagship.
  27. ^ Welsh, Wendy. "2008 Queen Anne's Revenge Shipwreck Field Summary" (PDF). qaronline.org. Retrieved 28 August 2015. 
  28. ^ Southerly, Chris. "Queen Anne's Revenge Shipwreck Project - 2010 Field Expedition" (PDF). qaronline.org. Retrieved 28 August 2015. 
  29. ^ "Blackbeard's Queen Anne's Revenge wreck reveals secrets of the real Pirate of the Caribbean". The Daily Telegraph, UK. May 29, 2011. Retrieved May 29, 2011. 
  30. ^ BBC news report
  31. ^ Drye, Willie (August 29, 2011). "Blackbeard's Ship Confirmed off North Carolina". Daily News. National Geographic. Retrieved August 29, 2011. 
  32. ^ Zucchino, David (9 June 2011). "Effort to tie North Carolina shipwreck to pirate Blackbeard advances". LA Times. Retrieved 7 March 2016. 
  33. ^ "Archaeologists Recover Two More Cannons From Blackbeard's Ship". National Geographic. June 21, 2013. Retrieved June 21, 2013. 
  34. ^ "Archaeologists recover 5 cannons from wreck of Blackbeard's ship". Fox News. Retrieved 30 October 2013. 
  35. ^ "Kapten Svartskägg sköt svenskt". NyTeknik. November 4, 2013. Retrieved March 28, 2015. 
  36. ^ "Pirate Blackbeard's Newly Recovered Cannon to be Shared with Public". Popular Archaeology. October 31, 2014. Retrieved 12 June 2015. 
  37. ^ "Rare Scraps of Paper Unearthed in the Sludge of Famed Pirate Ship". Smithsonian Magazine. January 9, 2018. Retrieved 18 January 2018. 
  38. ^ "National Register of Historical Places - NORTH CAROLINA (NC), Carteret County". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2007-02-07. 
  39. ^ "The Shipwreck". qaronline.org. 
  40. ^ "Queen Anne's Revenge". Allaboutjazz.com. 
  41. ^ "Pirates of the Caribbean". Cinemareview.com. 
  42. ^ "The Queen Anne's Revenge Sets Sail!". Piratesonline.go.com. 

External links

  • Queen Anne's Revenge: Archaeological Site, North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources
  • Blackbeard's Ship Confirmed off North Carolina National Geographic News
  • Piracy worries in pirate pursuit Blackbeard, Baltimore Sun
  • Philip Masters, True Amateur of History, Dies at 70, New York Times
  • National Register of Historic Places, National Park Service
  • Scientists Show Relics From Ship Fit For Pirate, Possibly Blackbeard, Chicago Tribune
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