Cache from shipwreck docking at N.C. museum of history

A quillon block that was part of a small hunting swordPhoto N.C. Department of Cultural Resources


A case exhibit of small artifacts from the wreck of what is believed to be Queen Anne’s Revenge (QAR), Blackbeard’s flagship, will be on display at the N.C. Museum of History in Raleigh from Jan. 7 through Jan. 30. The artifacts are fresh catch from the fall expedition at the shipwreck site near Beaufort.

The QAR ran aground in Beaufort Inlet in 1718, and the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources has led research at the site since 1997. The exhibit originated at the N.C. Maritime Museum in Beaufort, the official repository for the shipwreck artifacts, within the Division of State History Museums.

Among artifacts displayed is a part of a handblown blue-green window pane believed to have been in the captain’s quarters. A brass buckle that may have fastened a belt or a bandolier full of weapons will be exhibited. Brass scale weights for weighing reale silver coins will be on view; the reale weights were necessary because the smooth-edged coins could be filed or chiseled down (giving rise to the term “chiseler”), thus devaluing the coins.

A brass quillon block with gold gilding and a blade fragment from a small hunting sword will also be exhibited.

The ornate scroll work and fancy handle design were unusual for pirate gear, so the sword may have been acquired on some adventure. It was recovered in 2007 and has been conserved and readied for display.


Queen Anne's Revenge Carteret County coast QAR project N.C. Department of Cultural Resources North Carolina Maritime Museum in Beaufort