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Rachel Wall, 18th Century American pirate:


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.

George then went to sea on a fishing boat shortly after the couple moved to Boston, so Rachel found work as a servant girl. When George came back, he brought with him 5 sailors and their lovers, and persuaded Rachel to join them.

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.

Captain Charlotte De Berry, female pirate of the 17th Century

Charlotte de Berry (born 1636, England – died unknown date and place) was a (possibly fictional) female pirate captain.

In her mid to late teens she fell in love with a sailor and, against her parents’ will, married him. Disguised as a man, she followed him on board his ship and fought alongside him. Her true identity was discovered by an officer who kept this knowledge to himself, wanting de Berry.

He assigned her husband to the most dangerous jobs, which he survived thanks to his wife’s help. The officer finally accused Charlotte’s husband of mutiny, of which he was found guilty based on an officer’s word against that of a common sailor. He was punished by being flogged through the fleet, which, as the officer had hoped, killed him.

The officer then made advances towards Charlotte, which she refused. The next time they were in port she killed the officer and snuck away, dressing again as a woman and working on the docks.

While de Berry worked on the docks, a captain of a merchant ship saw her and kidnapped her. He forced de Berry to marry him and took her away on his trip to Africa. To escape her new husband, who was a brutal rapist and tyrant, de Berry gained the respect of the crew and persuaded them to mutiny.

In revenge, she decapitated her husband and became captain of the ship. After years of pirating, she fell in love with a Spaniard, Armelio Gonzalez. However, they were shipwrecked after days of hunger, they waited to see who would be dead first to eat. slowly one by one the crew went also, unfortunately, it was de Berry’s husband.

The survivors of her crew were rescued by a Dutch ship, and when that ship was attacked by pirates, they bravely defended their rescuers. While the others celebrated victory, Charlotte jumped overboard in order to join her dead husband. No one knows if she survived or not.

Though most of her items were sold by her crew members after her disappearance, there are many still being shipped. Some say her sister, Maria, gave birth to what is to be, de Berry’s niece. Some say she had a child with Armelio but left the child with a trusted crew mate.

Alvilda Synardus, medieval pirate queen:

18th Century painting of Alvilda in contemporary dress


She was allegedly was the daughter of Synardus, the king of Gotland, born in 1321. Though if anyone paid attention to the root of her name they would find she was around a lot longer than that.

It is said her parents kept her locked in her

 room, and set two poisonous snakes to keep away all but the most ardent of suitors.

The most persisant and brave fellow turned out to be Prince Alf of Denmark, and though he passed the test Alvilda’s parents were none too happy about the match. Deciding she no intention of staying with some stuffy Prince, Alvilda took advantage of her parents’ irresolution and her husband’s trust and just hightailed it out of there.

“She were a vision o’ loveliness…’er brown ‘air blowin’ in th’ wind, ‘er pretty eyes snappin’ fire left an’ right. ‘er shirt were open sae much I could see th’ swell o’ ‘er breasts, an’ I swear I woulda ‘ad ‘er right then an’ there, ‘cept’n she ‘ad tha’ big ol’ whip in one ‘and, an’ a dagger in th’ other. I were lucky tae get away wit’ me life, but it were worth it fer one look at ‘er, me matey.” – Dogface Royson, Sailor

She joined a crew of cross-dressing women, but had barely got started in a career in terrorizing the Baltic coast when they came across a crew of pirates that had lost their Captain.

They were so impressed by her capable skills that they voted unanimously to elect her as their new leader. With these fresh reinforcements beneath her ruthless guidance, this formidable woman became such a nuisance to the merchant trade that her husband, now King Alf of Denmark, was compelled to bring the troublesome pirates to justice. Alvilda and her crew fought back terribly, but in the gulf of Finland they were bested at last.

King Alf and his men boarded the pirates’ ship, where hand-to-hand fighting ensued. After sustaining heavy casualties, Alvilda’s crew succumbed and she herself was taken captive. With her beauty concealed by a face covering helmet, she was taken prisoner, and it was only when this helmet was removed that King Alf realized who the scourge of the seas had been. According to royal law, pirates were to burn at the stake. She was imprisoned, but escaped, burning her husband on the same stake before dawn.

On a whim all her own, she sided with the English in the 1345 invasion of Brittany. Seeking to enter the fray herself, she purchased and prepared three ships with money from the sale of her worldly possessions. She was a ruthless mistress of the sea and on land, and no ship nor town near the coast of Normandy was safe from her. With flame and sword, she was a fearsome sight to behold, as she burned whole Norman villages to the ground. She worked her crews hard, and quickly earned the reputation well deserved.

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