78
living in and around Bath. Spotswood felt that he was an immediate threat to Virginia commerce should he resume
pirating.
Using information gathered from a captured member of Blackbeard's crew, Spotswood dispatched 33 crewmen
from HMS Pearl and 24 crewmen from HMS Lyme and commandeered two small fast merchant sloops to sail
down the coast to North Carolina. With Maynard in command, the group located Blackbeard's ship, the
Adventure, and attacked, resulting in his subsequent death at Ocracoke and post-mortem decapitation by
Maynard. Maynard returned to Bath with Blackbeard’s head to meet Capt. Ellis Brand from the HMS Lyme who
had arrived in Bath with sailors by land. Maynard had sailed to Bath bringing his wounded Navy sailors from
Ocracoke to Bath for medical care and he re-provisioned with Bath merchants before returning in the chartered
sloops to Virginia.
A is for Animals. Colonists and their families of all ages whether gentry,
working class or slave and servant relied on wild and domestic animals for
home use and trade. Port Bath early merchants traded wild animals,
birds and fish bartering for other goods and commodities. Every
plantation and farm had domestic animals and free range livestock and
poultry which they raised for food and resale to other farms and
plantations as well as for export to other colonies. Some livestock was
herded to Virginia delivered “on the hoof” due to salt shortages, livestock
also was exported to Caribbean islands in exchange for sugar, rum and
spices. The town of Bath had a fenced in common for grazing and a town
ordinance was necessary to stop hogs and pigs from running wild in the
streets.
Bath’s early maritime trade relied on furtrading to Indians and selling surplus crops at harvest time from
plantations and small farms. At the time Bath’s founding fathers were laying out the Town Plan the new colonists
traded trinkets to Indians in exchange for furs such as beaver, deer, fox, bear. Early Bath families also relied on
the sale of domestic hides and tanned leather from cows and deer, even whale
oil, honey, and pigeon oil which they sold to other colonies and exported to
foreign ports. A few of the well known colonial animals are now extinct…
like the Carolina Bison, the Carolina passenger pigeon and the Carolina
Parakeet. The last known Carolina Bison was killed in Buncombe County in
1799 seven miles east of Asheville and the birds disappeared in the early
1900’s.
Mark Catesby's illustrations of the bison and parakeet are well known from
his book Natural History of Carolina, Florida and the Bahama Islands, which
was published in several
editions in the mid 1700s.
(Images Courtesy of UNC
CH Wilson Library).
The Carolina parakeet,
a small, gregarious parrot
with bright green, yellow
and blood-orange plumage, once flew in large flocks roosting
in cypress trees and lowland swamps (Conuropsis
carolinensis). Its habitat included the Carolinas and was known at
Previous Page Next Page