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Tall Ships Pirates and Treasure in Nova Scotia




Click here to enlarge.

2004-2005 Edition

(32 pp stitched booklet + cover)


Piracy is robbery on the high seas. In North America, the “Great Age of Piracy” is usually considered as the 250 years following Christopher Columbus’s discovery of the New World. During this period, and even well into the 1800’s, pirates often roamed freely in “tall ships” from Newfoundland to South America. Much of the treasure they accumulated is still hidden. 

The discovery of the New World made Spain very rich. Each year Spain would send convoys of ships to the Caribbean and South America to collect the treasure. The “Spanish Main,” as it was known, describes the routes the ships sailed. Convoys of ships left Spain each year and sailed on the prevailing winds that blow from the northeast to the southwest at latitudes near the equator.

The following spring or early summer Spanish ships would meet in Havana for the return trip to Spain. For the return trip the ships traveled up along the coast of North America until they could catch westerly winds, which blow predominantly from west to east. Ships traveling north might go as far as Newfoundland before sailing east, back to Spain. Many however, were intercepted by pirates, or severe Atlantic storms, and the treasure was captured or lost.

In the early days, pirates often lived openly, selling their booty in islands such as Jamaica and Tortuga in the Caribbean. [The name “buccaneer is often associated with Tortuga, referring to sailors who cooked meat over a barbeque (a “boucan”).] However, as time passed and populations grew, pirates had to retreat to new havens to conceal their activities and create a new treasure island.

Famous pirates are usually the ones that were caught. However, most successful pirates were not caught and consequently we only know of them by rumor or third party accounts. Pirates were successful for many reasons, but a major reason was that their ships tended to be small and fast and could hide where larger boats could not find them. But where could the pirates hide? Along the coast of North America, there was one place that offered the perfect shelter for pirates well into the early 1800’s – Nova Scotia.

Treasure Island Map

At least
two island groups (both have 365 islands)  near Nova Scotia are believed to still hide treasure, and  many more are documented in old newspapers and archives.  There are also many land sites.

X on the map marks where one Nova Scotia's treasure island is located,. The treasure is still not found and being hunted today.  To find out where the island is you must first solve the puzzle. See page 12.

Click here to enlarge.

Learn about Nova Scotia's lost and hidden treasures; secrets of Nova Scotia's treasure island; the famous "money pit;" treasure map stories; piece of eight silver dollars; the Jolly Roger; pirates, privateers, buccaneers - Sir Francis Drake, Captain Kidd, Captain Morgan, Blackbeard, Black Bart, and more. There are stories about local pirates and privateers. Different tall ships are illustrated and explained – sloop, schooner, topsail schooner, clipper ship, brig, brigantine, barque (bark), barquentine (barkentine), galleon, and many, many others. Tall ships in the current worldwide tall ship fleet and tall ships native to, or sailing from, Nova Scotia and Atlantic Canada are featured.  The Titanic and Atlantic have not been forgotten either, along with the Liverpool Packet (richest privateer) Le Chameau (richest sunk pay ship... so far) and the ships that went down on Sable Island (graveyard of the Atlantic). The Bluenose (illustrated), WD Lawrence (illustrated) and the Hector are mentioned. Also New Brunswick vessels such as the Ship White Star (illustrated) and the Brig Amity (photo) and PEI, Quebec and Ontario ships. Learn about the early history of Acadia (later called Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Maine) Louisbourg, the Scots and the Loyalists from America.  Also includes some of the great American tall ships, pirates and privateers. 

Tall ships, pirates and treasure in Nova Scotia provides a lot of information on Nova Scotia's colorful past that many have not heard before. For example, "Why didn't Nova Scotia (and Canada) join the American Revolution?," "Why are Nova Scotians called 'Bluenosers?," "What is the difference between a bark and a barkentine?," "How much sail do tall ships use?," and "How much of Louisbourg has been rebuilt?" All information on tall ships, pirates and treasure is derived from historical record. The stories are true, but the treasure, in many cases, is yet to be found. However, the secret for getting the treasure from Nova Scotia's famed treasure island is revealed here.  It is so simple, it is amazing no one has tried it already!!! Perhaps it will be you?  However, to find where the treasure is and how to get it, you must first do the treasure map crossword puzzle (see inside). After that, if you are successful, you can relax, read a few jokes, play some trivia - and think of all the things you will do with your newfound treasure. 

ISBN 0-9693595-7-8

Tall Ships, Pirates and Treasure in Nova Scotia © is published by Canadian Marine Publications, P.O. Box 34097, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, B3J 3S1. Illustrations by Canadian Marine Publications

Copyright: Robin W. A Rodger, May, 2000. May 2003. All rights reserved.  No part of this book may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without written permission from the author.

Telephone:  902.425.1320

Facsimile:  902.425.1325

Electronic Mail:  cmppublicati@cmppublications.com

Publisher's Note: Information contained herein is loosely based on historical fact and may also contain speculation and/or folklore. The publisher accepts no liability for misinterpretations, errors or omissions.

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