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Even if you have seen the movie Pirates of the Caribbean, gone on the ride at Disneyland and dressed up like one at Halloween, that doesn’t mean you know what the real pirates of the Caribbean were like. I am going to share the short-stories of two of the most well-known Women Pirates of the Caribbean.
These two women were just as violent and desperate of thieves as the men, who thought nothing of torture, mayhem and murder. Serving proudly on John “Calico Jack” Rackham’s ship was Anne Bonny, the lover of Captain John and Mary Reed.
Anne Bonny, born near Cork, Ireland, fell for the young penniless sailor, James Bonny, at a young age. James made a living turning in pirates for bounties, which in turn caused Anne to lose all respect for him. Developing interests in other men around Nassau, this is around the time she met Pirate of the Caribbean, “Calico Jack”. After going to sea with him, she learned to work, cuss and fight as well as any of the men. When “Calico Jack” was captured and sentenced to death in 1720 she allegedly said to him “If you had fought like a man, you need not have hanged like a dog.” Bonny was sentenced to death after being captured but was spared due to pregnancy of her second child, she later died around 1782.
Mary Reed was a British soldier who married a Flemish soldier and opened an Inn near Breda. After her husband died she took a ship to the West Indies where it was attacked by pirates. Being a tomboy her whole life, Reed decided to live the life of a Caribbean pirate from then on. She was a deadly pirate and allegedly challenged a veteran pirate to a personal dual and won, just to save a handsome young man she had her eye on. After being captured she was spared a hanging because she was pregnant, but died 5 months after in prison due to illness in 1721.
These two Women Pirates of the Caribbean are still remembered today and are the inspiration for many books, movies and other works. Click here to find out more about the real Pirates of the Caribbean including these two fearless women.