The ‘Golden Age’ of Piracy in the Early Modern World

Colonial powers at the time constantly fought with pirates and engaged in several notable battles and other related events. Introduction The Golden Age of Piracy is a common designation for the period between the 1650s and the 1730s, when maritime piracy was a significant factor in the histories of the Caribbean, the United Kingdom, the[…]

‘Up Aloft from Down Below’: Sailors and Sea Chanteys since the 15th Century

They back to the 15th century and peaked in popularity at the end of the 19th century, right before wooden ships gave way to steam vessels. Introduction Historically, chanteys – which are also spelled as “shanties” or “chanties” – began with a sing-out by a crew member recognized as “the chanteyman,” usually someone prized for[…]

The Capture of the Treasure Ship ‘Madre de Deus’ in 1592

In the Elizabethan age privateers were sailors and adventurers who scoured the Caribbean and Atlantic for treasure ships. Introduction The treasure ship Madre de Deus (aka Madre de Dios) was a Portuguese vessel carrying hugely valuable cargo from the East Indies which was attacked and captured by a fleet of English privateers in the Azores[…]

The Submerged History of the Submarine

Submarines played a major role in Word War I. But the first submersible was actually used, though unsuccessfully, in the Revolutionary War. By Matthew Wills On July 1, 2019, a fire on a Russian nuclear-powered submarine in the Barents Sea killed fourteen of the crew. According to Russian sources, they died preventing a “catastrophe of[…]

Lady Hell Cats: Women Marines of World War I

In 1918, the Marine Corps began investigating how the integration of women would take place. By Kenna HowatHistorian Prior to World War I, if a woman wanted to join the military, she would have to join as a nurse or disguise her sex. Some historians estimate that hundreds of women served in the Civil War[…]