Pirate Research Paper

Submitted By Kyla-Goodwin
Words: 1062
Pages: 5

Research Paper
Kyla Goodwin
World Civilization

William Kidd is a well-known pirate from the late 1600’s. Originally starting out as a privateer, Kidd moved from attacking foreign ships and pirates to attacking his native British ships. William Kidd was eventually captured and executed for his crimes. Although his exact date of birth is unknown, William Kidd was born in 1654 in Dundee, Scotland. He was born to a seaman, which historians believe led Kidd to have a passion for the water as well. Throughout his twenties, William Kidd worked for a number of buccaneer crews and by his early thirties was a well-respected privateer. “Around that time, Kidd set sail for America and a new life, and eventually, new riches, in New York…” (William). While in New York, William Kidd met a rich widow whom he ended up marrying. After England and France’s tension turned into war by 1989, Kidd was hired as a privateer to command a vessel name the Blessed William. The Blessed William was a privately owned ship working in the West Indies that had the government’s permission to attack enemy ships. If Kidd came in contact with any riches on an enemy ship, he was required to split the proceeds with the government and he was known to do just that. William Kidd ended up having issues with his crew on the Blessed William and he returned to land in America. In 1695, not being on the ocean proved to be too much for William Kidd and he returned to England where he received a royal commission to become a privateer for the government. “There, he befriended Lord Bellomont, who had been tapped to take over the governorship of New York” (William). Lord Bellomont hired William Kidd to man one of his 34 gun vessels. Bellomont gave Kidd finances and directions to start on his way towards the West Indies. There he was to attack French ships and pirate vessels with his crew. Any of the treasures on board the ships were to be split between Kidd, his men, and all of the people funding his trip. This included Richard Coote, also known as the Earl of Bellomont, and other nobles like the king of England. May of the following year, William Kidd set off from the Chatham docks to the West Indies in the vessel Adventure Galley. Unfortunately, Kidd’s trip to the Caribbean did not go as planned. Many of Adventure Galley’s crew members died of illness along the way and they did not end up coming across as many French ships as they had hoped. During his search for ships to take, William Kidd got into an argument with a rebellious gunner named William Moore. Moore was killed by Kidd during the argument by getting hit in the head. A year after setting sail from England, Kidd had still not captured many ships. With mounting pressure from his crew to get treasure, Kidd decided to sail to the island of Madagascar knowing that was where many pirates stopped. William Kidd and his crew succeeded in capturing small pirate ships around Madagascar but in January 1698, they hit the jackpot. The Quedagh Merchant was a huge Armenian ship that was captained by an Englishman. The ship was carrying gold and other riches that came in contact with the Adventure Galley. William Kidd and his crew overtook the ship and sold all of the valuables on board. This threw William Kidd into his first pirate action. Following the capture of a ship that was owned by a minister at the court of the Indian Grand Moghul, the majority of William Kidd’s crew abandoned him. Some ran off with their treasures while others joined Robert Culliford’s crew. Culliford was a notorious pirate who had run into Kidd near the island of Madagascar. After the capturing the Quedagh Merchant and the killing of a gunner on his ship, William Kidd was now a wanted criminal. The people that had invested in William Kidd’s original venture were now pulling away and trying to keep their names and the names of others…