Blackbeard's sword ?
- On 15/01/2011
- In Museum News
Photo Wendy M. Welsh
From National Geographic
Could this partly gilded hilt have held Blackbeard's sword ? There's no way to know for sure, though it was found amid the North Carolina wreck of the Queen Anne's Revenge, the flagship of the infamous 18th-century pirate.
Since 1997, archaeologists have been excavating the Queen Anne's Revenge. The sword hilt—found in pieces but reassembled for this picture—is among their latest finds and was revealed to the public this month.
After running aground on a sandbar in 1718 near the town of Beaufort, the ship was abandoned but likely remained intact and partly above water for as long as a year before collapsing and disintegrating, according to archaeologist David Moore of the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources.
"In any event," he said, "the pirates would have had ample opportunity to take anything that they thought valuable."
The newfound hilt may have been left behind because it was unwanted, or it may have been inaccessible, according to Moore's colleague Wendy Welsh, a conservator on the project.