250,000 pieces of Blackbeard from shipwreck

From Island Gazette

Since the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources (NCDCR) began excavating the shipwreck believed to the Queen Anne’s Revenge, Blackbeard’s flagship, more than 250,000 objects have been recovered from the Atlantic Ocean, near Beaufort.

All recovered artifacts go through the conservation lab located at East Carolina University in Greenville. On Friday some of the latest artifacts readied for exhibit, and cannons and other works in progress, were reviewed for the news media at the lab. 

“Some artifacts are in a stone like coating and are concreted together,” explained Chief Conservator Sarah Watkins-Kenney. “We may not know what’s in them when they come up.

Some objects, like ballast stones, don’t take long to conserve. Some, like cannons and hull timbers, can take four or five years.”

Among the showcase finished artifacts were a pair of copper alloy cuff links, neither as large as a dime, which were in good condition and intact. Another item was a pewter clyster syringe, indelicacy aside, which was used for enemas.

Both took about two years to conserve.

They are among items shown that will be transferred to the N.C. Maritime Museum in Beaufort in January, and will be exhibited by Valentine’s Day. A belt buckle, nesting weight, wine bottle and apothecary mortar also were displayed.

Queen Anne's Revenge pirate Blackbeard Cape Fear

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