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Thursday, August 9, 2012

Pirate Ship Found Off Tonga?

It must be the boy in me, but I still love reading about pirate treasure...
Divers in Tonga have discovered the wreck of a vessel said to be a historic pirate ship containing a legendary hoard of sunken treasure.
The wreck is thought to be of the Port-au-Prince sunk by local islanders after its pirate crew had filled the ship’s hold with gold and treasures looted from British vessels.
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... the Port au Prince, a French built vessel, arrived in the Ha’apai island group on November 9 1806 laden with spoils including silver and gold ore. After being attacked by islanders all but four of the crew were massacred, including the ship’s captain, and the ship was burned to the waterline.

However, chief Ulukalala took William Mariner, a young deck-hand on the privateer, to live with him and his people for four years after the massacre.

Mariner took the name Toki Ukamea, meaning Iron Axe and on returning to England, he wrote a detailed account of his experiences which then became one of the main sources for historians studying pre-Christian Tonga.

Over the years dozens of people have clamed to find the wreck only to have their hopes dashed.
(Full story here).

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