The astonishing story of Mary Read, soldier and pirate

If you don’t know it, clock the story of Mary Read, who spent much of her life passing as a boy or a man – and had careers in soldiering and two spells of piracy, one of which was as crew with pirate captain John ‘Calico Jack’ Rackham.

She became friendly with Calico Jack’s lover, pirate Anne Bonny. The pirate captain became suspicious that they were lovers, and had to be let into the secret of Mary’s true gender.

Then Mary fell in love with a captured sailor, saved him from probable death in a feud, then got captured and tried, and finally died of fever in jail…

It’s scarcely credible, particularly when you think of the sleeping and toileting arrangements on ships in the old days, but it must be true…

My thanks to Museum Ship Fountain for pointing this out.

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Photos of AK Ilen ready for launch

Nigel Towse of Sherkin is a gentleman and scholar – I know this because he has very kindly sent me these great photos of the launch of the AK Ilen via my musical pal Katie Howson. Thanks for your kind help, both of you!

The Ilen looks great of course, and they had such a nice day for it!

Here’s an earlier post announcing that the launch after seven years’ hard work was imminent.

For your further entertainment, here is a project he was involved with a few years back, and here’s his lovely 1892 Heir Island lobster boat, Hanorah.

 

Gavin Atkin's weblog for the sort of people who like looking inside boat sheds: old boats, traditional boats, boat building, restoration, the sea and the North Kent Coast

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