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On This Day… The Pirate Who Was Hanged Twice

Written by: George Chittenden : 17 May 2019

It was on this day, 23rd May back in 1701 when the privateer turned pirate, Captain Kidd was hanged in a public execution beside the River Thames in London. Captain Kidd was born in Scotland, before setting out for a life at sea. He sailed countless voyages across most of the known world before he made the mistake that would cost him his life. On January 30th 1698, Captain Kidd and his crew captured their greatest prize, the 400-ton Quedagh Merchant. When news of this theft reached London it confirmed Kidd's reputation as a pirate and orders were issued to arrest Kidd and his crew.

Captain Kidd

Captain Kidd

Captain Kidd was a shrewd man and prior to his arrest he hid a stash of treasure. He was eventually caught in Boston on July 6th 1699, and after spending a year incarcerated in America he was taken to London to face justice. Captain Kidd was found guilty on all charges (murder and five counts of piracy) and sentenced to death. Unfortunately for him on the first attempt to kill him the hangman's rope snapped and he survived, only to be hanged again just minutes later. As a warning to future would-be pirates Captain Kidd’s body was gibbeted over the River Thames at Tilbury Point for three years! But what about the treasure he stashed? Check out our mini-documentary on this fascinating topic to find out more.

Kidd’s body gibbeted

Kidd’s body gibbeted

Are you already curious to discover what happened tomorrow? Have a great day.

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