Intersal Discovers Blackbeard’s Flagship!


~October 1997 the announcement was made in a press conference in Beaufort, NC at the NC Maritime Museum. Recovery efforts during October have virtually proven that Blackbeard’s ship “The Queen Anne’s Revenge” has been found off the Beaufort Inlet. So far 13 and a possible 14th cannons have been located, many are 6 pound shot cannon, too big for smaller vessels. Two of the cannons have been raised and are now undergoing restoration. Of the cannon located, there are two sizes and a variety of musket barrels which indicates that this was not a regular naval vessel, but a pirate’s collection of munitions.




Also collected was a bag shot grenade or “Molotov Cocktail” style weapon that was lit and thrown. When the device exploded it showered the area with shot and shrapnel. The use of the device by pirates was described by William Defoe in his description of the final battle between Blackbeard and Maynard where Blackbeard was finally killed.

Other items recovered include pewter platters from London, 17th and 18th Century gin bottles (which are important to any Pirate vessel), a 1714 onion bottle, 3 anchors-one of which still had a partial wood shank. The size of the early 18th century style anchors indicate that the ship would have been about 360 tons in size. The 6 pound cannons alone weigh 2500 pounds each.

cannon-lift-08bThe ship lies in 20 feet of water with heavy Coast Guard and law enforcement security. The artifacts on the bottom are easily accessible as seen in video tape shot of the recovery effort, however they are heavily encrusted and are mostly in a tangled heap making recovery difficult.

Intersal, the salvagers, led by president Phil Masters, entered into agreements with the state of North Carolina with the goal of keeping intact the entire collection, which promises to be one of the richest maritime archeological finds of the century.