Pirates, Pistols & Pardons! 

March 12, 1719:  Blackbeard's pirate associates are tried in Williamsburg, VA. Records indicate that one is acquitted, one is pardoned and the other 14 pirates are hanged. Of the two who escaped the gallows, one proved that he had participated in the bloody fight with Virginia troops out of necessity and was only a guest at a drinking party on Thach's ship and not a pirate. The other, Israel Hands, was not present at the fight. He claimed that during a drinking session Blackbeard had shot him in the knee, and that he was still covered by the royal pardon. Hands then testified against corrupt North Carolina officials with whom Thach had consorted. The bodies of the remaining pirates were left to rot in gibbets along Williamsburg's Capitol Landing Road. Click here for More

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