Rachel Wall was born in 1760, in Carlisle: A town in the Province of Pennsylvania. Her birth-given name was Rachel Schmidt. She lived on a small farm just outside Carlisle, but was never happy there, because she preferred the waterfront.
When she was a young woman, she was attacked by a group of girls down by the docks, but a man named George Wall came to her rescue, and they fell in love and married.
After 1 week, they had all spent their money, and set sail on the boat once again. George suggested that the party become pirates. The party also got another boat.
Rachel and the crew worked off of the Isle of Shoals, near New Hampshire.
Rachel and her crew had a clever ploy: After a storm, Rachel would stand on deck and yell out for help. When passers-by came to assist her, their goods would be stolen and then they would be killed by Rachel’s crew.
Between 1781 and 1782, the crew captured 12 boats, killed 24 sailors, and stole $6,000 in cash.
Eventually, after the crew was washed out into sea by accident, Rachel returned to Boston to be a servant girl. But she still did enjoy sneaking into harboured boats and stealing things from inside.
Her final robbery was when she saw a young woman named Margaret Bender, wearing a bonnet which Rachel coveted. She attempted to steal the bonnet, and rip out Margaret’s tongue.
But she was caught and arrested. She was tried for robbery on September 10, 1789 but requested that she be tried as a pirate, maintaining that she had never killed anybody.
But she was found guilty of robbery, and sentenced to be hanged on October 8, 1789. Her death marked the last occasion a woman was hung in Massachusetts.
Yo-ho-ho, me heartie – smashin’ stuff! It be International Talk Like A Pirate Day. Long Jeanette Silver