Archaeologists studying wreckage found about two miles offshore say signs continue to suggest they may have found Queen Anne’s Revenge, the flagship of the pirate Blackbeard.
“We don’t expect to find treasure. But we’ve already found numerous artifacts,” said Fay Mitchell Henderson of the state Department of Cultural Resources. “We’re hoping to be able to definitively say that this boat belonged to Blackbeard.”
Underwater archaeologists began a month-long exploration of the site Oct. 3. They soon plan to begin raising artifacts from the site.
Divers have discovered nine cannons at the wreck site about 20 feet below the sea’s surface. When Blackbeard was captain of the Queen Anne’s Revenge, it carried 40 cannons.
Researchers say that if the wreck is not of the flagship, it could be one of two other similar ships in Blackbeard’s fleet or a small Spanish sloop tender.
Blackbeard, the nickname of Edward Teach, commanded four vessels and 300 pirates in his prime, and his flagship carried a crew of 125. His reign on the seas climaxed in May 1718 when his crew blockaded Charleston, S.C., for more than a week.