James Ford Bell Library

Pirates!

Pirates abound at the University of Minnesota Libraries!

The James Ford Bell Library not only has accounts of pirates originating as long ago as the 15th century, it also contains the records of French corsairs of the 18th and early 19th centuries, a real letter of marque, and laws, letters, and treatises against piracy.

Sea ChantiesPirate LingoPirate Lore



Poem by Lord Macaulay, “The Last Buccaneer”

The winds were yelling, the waves were swelling,
The sky was black and drear,
When the crew with eyes of flame brought the ship
without a name
Alongside the last Buccaneer.

“Whence flies your sloop full sail before so fierce a gale,
When all others drive bare on the seas?
Say, come ye from the short of the holy Salvador,
Or the gulf of the rich Caribbees?”

“From a shore no search hath found, from a gulf no line can sound,
Without rudder or needle we steer;
Above, below our bark dies the sea-fowl and the shark,
As we fly be the last Buccaneer.”

“Tonight there shall be heard on the rocks of Cape de Verde
A loud crash and a louder roar;
And tomorrow shall the deep with a heavy moaning sweep
The corpses and wreck to the shore.”

The stately ship of Clyde securely now may ride
In the breadth of the citron shades;
And Severn’stowering mast securely now hies fast,
Through the seas of the balmy Trades.
From St. Jago’s wealthy port, from Havannah’s royal fort,
The seaman goes forth without fear;
For since the stormy night not a mortal hath had sight
Of the flag of the last Buccaneer.

From A Sailor's Garland, selected and edited by John Masefield (London, 1906).
T C Wilson Rare 820.1 M377s

Other U of M Libraries Collections with Pirates

In addition to searching the U of M Libraries online catalog, be sure to visit the collection web sites:
Children's Literature Research Collections
Kautz Family YMCA Archives
Social Welfare History Archives
Special Collections and Rare Books
University Archives

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O. Meredith Wilson Library
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