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The Pirates' Pact: The Secret Alliances Between History's Most Notorious Buccaneers and Colonial America

3.39 of 5 stars 3.39  ·  rating details  ·  23 ratings  ·  7 reviews
The Secret Alliances Between History's Most Notorious Buccaneers and Colonial America

Was classical piracy an earlier version of state-sponsored terrorism?

Here's the story of how almost every well-known buccaneer of the "Golden Age of Piracy" enjoyed active sponsorship from England's governors in the American colonies- setting a pattern of official disobedience to the Crown
Hardcover, 301 pages
Published October 1st 2008 by International Marine Publishing (first published September 10th 2008)
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184th out of 368 books — 496 voters
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Donna Jo Atwood
Mar 13, 2009 Donna Jo Atwood rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Patty Peden
In this book we learn that in the 1600s many pirates were subsided, assisted, and condoned by various governmental bodies and/or influential people. Burgess likens the system to modern day terrorists--although he confines almost all the work to the historical figures. Unlike many pirate biographies, this book talks about the shadowy figures behind the pirate ships that sailed.
He names names from the city fathers, the colonial governors, the judges, all the way up to the king.

David R.
A first rate exploration of a subject that's been drowned by the "Pirates of the Caribbean" mystique. Burgess sets the table with the defeat of "Blackbeard" in 1718, and then builds his case, documenting how and why colonial officials colluded with pirates (to the exasperation of the British Crown) for much of the 17th and 18th centuries. It's astonishing how deeply the colonies were in bed with the criminal element. Excellent work!
Explores the gradual change in relationships between the Whitehall-appointed colonial governors of the American and Caribbean colonies and the pirates who frequented their harbours from complicity to an eventual backlash that would lead to the eradication of government-commissioned piracy by the mid-eighteenth century.
Nice, nuanced history of the interconnectedness of pirates and the colonies in the late 17th - early 18th centuries. It could have used a little editing to make it a bit more streamlined (got a bit boring toward the latter half), but mostly an interesting read.
Dennis Blewitt
This is a must read for any historian of crime and corruption. It shows the influence of crime and corruption in the formation of the United States. It is a must read for those who oppose confiscation laws.
Katrina Bergherm
Bah. I was hoping for exciting stories but got a bunch of dry facts. I did learn some interesting bits along the way, though.
Interesting, but about 100 pages too long.
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