it or not, there is treasure to be found on the beaches
of New Jersey. Centuries ago, pirates roamed the shores
of New Jersey and buried some of their treasure here. Captain
Kidd's treasure chest is the most sought-after bounty on
Kidd was born around 1645 in Scotland. He loved the ocean
and adventure, and in 1689 Kidd captained a privateer ship
for England. As captain, Kidd became wealthy by protecting
English ships and attacking French ships. After his service
ended, he moved to New York City and became a private captain.
He also bought beach houses along the northeastern seaboard
and rented them to people.
this period, however, the governors of New Jersey, New
York, and Massachusetts were having problems with pirates.
Because they were aware of Captain Kidd's prowess at fighting
ships, they asked him to protect the coast from the buccaneers.
He agreed to help the three states, and once again he was
protecting ships on the high seas.
this point in his life, Kidd was an upstanding, law-abiding
citizen. In 1695 he received a privateer license for England,
which permitted him to sail his own ship to protect the
East India Company's fleet. The East India Company was
an English business that traded goods with India. Captain
Kidd's job was to attack French and pirate ships and take
Kidd named his privateer ship Adventure Galley. In order
to find a crew, he first sailed from England to New York
City, where he promised his chosen sailors portions of
whatever treasure they captured. Captain Kidd then sailed
to the Red Sea, which is near Egypt and Saudi Arabia.
arriving in the Middle East, however, Kidd spared many
French and pirate ships. Instead, he and his crew attacked
and looted wealthy ships from different countries. When
his crew attempted a mutiny, Captain Kidd killed one of
his crewmembers. After the murder, the crew abandoned all
other attempts at mutiny.
piracy marked a turning point for Captain Kidd. Soon he
began attacking ships regardless of their countries of
origin, including French vessels and other pirate ships.
He solidified his new reputation as a pirate by attacking
the Indian ship Quediah Merchant, which carried silks,
gold, spices, weapons, and other riches well beyond imagination.
Kidd and his crew commandeered the Quediah Merchant and
renamed it the Adventure Prize. They sailed to the Caribbean,
and while docked in Port Royale, the captain realized that
he was now considered a pirate. He also learned that the
British were hunting him, so he bought a new ship and moved
his loot onto it. Captain Kidd then sailed to New York
City to try to clear his name.
his voyage, Kidd docked several times along the New Jersey
coastline, where he used his political connections and
wealth to make sure no one turned him in to the authorities.
Soon afterwards the captain sailed for Boston, and upon
his arrival, the governor arrested him for piracy. He was
sent to England, given a quick trial, convicted of piracy,
and sentenced to death for his crimes. British authorities
covered him with tar, chained him, and hung his body off
a bridge over the Thames River in London where it stayed
until it rotted away.