Dominican Republic History

PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN



The REAL pirates of the Caribbean were a truly 'scurvy' band of misfits, petty criminals, escapee convicts and slaves, coralled into a menacing 'scourge of the Caribbean seas' by wayward ex-naval officers.

In the mid-seventeenth century smugglers, run-away servants and ships' crews settled on the island of Tortuga, to the west of Cap Haïtien.

This was to become the headquarters of the Caribbean privateers who raided the Spanish treasure ships, and a centre from which such infamous characters as the British pirate, Henry Morgan, directed their operations.



A Rum do! Famous pirate leader Henry Morgan

Captain Henry Morgan


Many earned their living by capturing animals whose leather could be sold, or their meat cured over smoking fires. The French word for this process is boucaner – hence the reason pirates are also sometimes referred to as buccaneers!




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