September 19th is officially ‘Talk like a Pirate Day’. Who comes up with this for real haha!
I’m not going to talk like a pirate, however I will tell you about Black Caesar. The notorious pirate who terrorised the seven seas in the 17th Century.
Like all pirates, his origins are shrouded in mystery. Some tales have him born in Haiti to the name of Henri Caesar, while others say that he was born in West Africa and became a Chief of his village. He was considered an intelligent man by all who knew him. He was a leader.
One thing that all the tales agree on was that he had a large frame, very muscular with a steely gaze which made one nervous just by meeting his eye.
Coming up around that century, black people were being hunted and captured by slave traders. Though they couldn’t catch Black Caesar, even after several attempts.
One fine day while walking around the docks, Black Caesar was approached by a gentleman who offered Black Caesar and his men work. Black Caesar refuted his initial advance, as he and his crew were contempt with their current hustle.
But then the gentlemen pulled out a shiny gold watch and offered this to Black Caesar. He promised Black Caesar that if he and his men were to join the next expedition, there would be more where that came from. Not one to pass on an opportunity, Caesar agreed and he and his men boarded the ship.
At first, everything appeared to be what had been promised, the captain showed Black Caesar and his men gold and silk. After the presentation, Black Caesar’s clan were fed meals and were given enough alcohol to distract even the most vigilant of men.
But before they knew it, the ship had set sail. Black Caesar’s clan were ready to fight, but the ship’s crew came to the deck and they had two to every one of Black Caesar’s clan. They were captured.
The ship was on route to Florida where the captain would go on to sell and trade his goods being the new found labour. And with Black Caesar amongst his stock he was sure to make some good money.
As he was the leader, Black Caesar was locked up away from his clan and therefore was brought meals separately. The ship mate who brought Black Caesar his food was a friendly and inquisitive man and began to speak with Black Caesar. They struck up a genuine friendship along the route to America.
The waters to America became very choppy. The boat started rocking, the waves got higher and stronger and before they knew it, the boat was in serious danger of toppling over.
“Food and valuables only” screamed the captain as the ship mates frantically ran around looking for loot to collect ahead of jumping overboard.
Fate offered Black Caesar a chance to escape, but he needed help.
The ship sailed into the eye of a hurricane. The wind and the huge waves swallowed up the boat, taking the lives of many men.
Through the confusion and shipwreck, Black Caesar’s new friend was able to break him free and the two escaped on a longboat taking as much ammunition and supplies they could carry between them.
The two were the lone survivors of the shipwreck. The two sailed onto a near island off the coast of Florida, and from there the two were inseparable and their lives were about to change.
This was his origin story, stay tuned for part two…. Have you heard of Black Caesar before?