Blackbeard had successful exploits on the high seas and had collected a great deal of treasure during his bold blockade of the Port of Charleston. He heard rumors of a naval effort being assembled to rid the sea lanes of pirates once and for all. He probably thought that the time was right to peacefully retire from pirating as his mentor, Capt. Hornigold, had done.
He once again proved his treachery and devious nature as his plot unfolded in the Beaufort Inlet.
Blackbeard was still sailing with Stede Bonnet, who by now was more of a nuisance than a help. He approached the Inlet on the Queen Anne's Revenge with his mate Israel Hands in command of the sloop "The Adventure and Bonnet's sloop. Earlier, Blackbeard had secretly moved the best of the booty to one of the smaller sloops. He directed the crew of the Queen Anne to run her aground for the purpose of cleaning the hull. While running aground, the mast cracked and the hull began to fail. Making a good show, he had "The Adventure" come along to cast over lines and help pull the Queen Anne off the bar. Before long, the Adventure had also run aground in the surf.
With the crew aware of their predicament, Blackbeard spoke to Stede Bonnet of a 'new' plan.
Blackbeard had learned that King George had extended his offer of a pardon to pirates until September. Blackbeard expressed his interest in sailing to Bath, NC and taking the pardon. He encouraged Bonnet to do the same, and promised him the return of his ship "The Revenge" upon his return from receiving his pardon. Bonnet, who most likely was glad to get away from Blackbeard quickly agreed, and left for Bath with a few crew and a small boat. Blackbeard had promised him his ship and part of the booty upon his return.
With Bonnet gone, Blackbeard refloated the Adventure, and taking the rest of the booty with him, sailed for what most likely is now known as the Fort Macon area of Bogue Island. There he marooned 25 of his crew, cutting his number of remaining men to 40. He left Bonnet's ship The Revenge, and headed north, up the Atlantic coast in the Adventure, now able to keep more of the booty for himself and his crew.
Bonnet did return with his pardon and found his boat waiting for him. But Blackbeard was gone with the treasure. Realizing he had been tricked, he set off to find Blackbeard to get his share back. Before he left, he did notice the signals of the hapless crew marooned on Bogue Island and sailed to pick them up before setting out. Bonnet never saw Blackbeard again.
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