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Pirates of the Golden Age
Wooden Boat Building

About This Site

This site is dedicated to all those souls who have ever dreamed of throwing off the shackles of their mundane lives and dared to exchange those chains for a life of adventure aboard a small boat of their own… casting off for distant horizons and never looking back. It is also for anybody who enjoys building and messing about in boats.

Recommended reading for cruisers, liveaboards, boat bums and dreamers

Cruising, Sailing & Living Aboard

Living Aboard: A Condensed Guide for Moving from House to Hull
Making that final decision to move aboard a sailboat or power boat is a drastic change in lifestyle. Whether it is a spontaneous decision or a future goal, the success of the transition is dependent upon preparedness and expectations. This guide will address the financial, geographical, social, and emotional components that will assist you in implementing a plan and prepare you for the realities of moving from “house to hull.” A checklist is provided at the end of the guide to assist in consolidating your concerns and in tracking your progress.
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The Essentials of Living Aboard a Boat
The Essentials of Living Aboard educates both dreamers and explorers with information about this wonderful and rewarding lifestyle. Mark Nicholas has combined his experience of life aboard with the advice of other liveaboards, marina owners, technicians, boat manufacturers and advocates in order to detail the challenges and offer real advice for success. This lifestyle, typically thought to be out of reach or “for other people,” is now available to all who dream.Read this book if you’ve ever been gripped by the romantic idea of living on water. Mark Nicholas presents a rich mine of information for potential liveaboards, information he gleaned the hard way as a self-confessed “expert at what can go wrong.”
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All in the Same Boat : Living Aboard and Cruising
More than two decades ago, Tom and Mel Neale moved onto a boat full-time with their two daughters. Now their neighborhood is anywhere they choose to anchor. Here’s all the information needed to follow in their footsteps, including choosing a boat, earning a living, raising and educating kids, and much more.
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Tales from Lyla’s Log: Adventures aboard a cruising sailboat from Cape Cod to Florida and the Bahamas
Tales from Lyla’s Log is a sea story, not a how-to book. It is a fast moving, close-up narrative about cruising and living on a sailboat exploring most of the east coast, Florida and the Bahamas. What is it really like to live this life? What is it like on a day when the wind is fair and the sea is a deep blue with pure-white whitecaps-or when a night overtakes you that’s “not a fit night out for man or beast”? If you love maps, or nautical charts, and wonder what those bays, rivers, islands and inlets each are like; If you wonder what experience is required, what sort of boat with what abilities is the kind you might need, or you’d just like to read how one couple prepared for this sort of adventuring and made it all work, you will find it all here in this book.
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Living Aboard The Sailboat Robin Lee
Have you ever dreamed of sailing off into the sunset to live on a sailboat, far from the humdrum of everyday life, exploring places unknown to you, and visiting a tropical paradise? Don and Robin Lee Rose took a temporary leave from their careers and did just that. Living Aboard the Sailboat Robin Lee is a chronicle of the 2 1/2 year voyage of Robin Lee Rose and Don Rose aboard their sailboat Robin Lee, and is based on information recorded in a journal written by Robin during the trip. The voyage began on September 25, 1986 in Port Clinton, Ohio and ended on April 1, 1989 in Fort Walton Beach, Florida. Their cruise included six months in the Bahamas; nine months along the Florida Coast, the Keys and Dry Tortuga Islands; five months along the East Coast, north of Florida; five months on the Great Lakes and inland waterways of the Eastern United States; and five months along the Gulf Coast. Have you ever wondered what such a life would really be like?
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The Cruising Woman’s Advisor
The cruising life offers adventure, exotic destinations, and expansive opportunities for personal growth. But considering such a life leads to vexing questions: What do I need to learn? What do I do if my partner falls overboard? How will our relationship be tested at sea? Let longtime cruiser and circumnavigator Diana Jessie start you on the journey of a lifetime with her advice on short-term cruising or long-term voyaging.
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Life Under the Jolly Roger: Reflections on Golden Age Piracy
Dissecting the conflicting views of the golden age of pirates—as romanticized villains on one hand and genuine social rebels on the other—this fascinating chronicle explores the political and cultural significance of these nomadic outlaws by examining a wide range of ethnographical, sociological, and philosophical standards. The meanings of race, gender, sexuality, and disability in pirate communities are analyzed and contextualized, as are the pirates’ forms of organization, economy, and ethics. Going beyond simple swashbuckling adventures, the examination also discusses the pirates’ self-organization, the internal make-up of the crews, and their early-1700s philosophies—all of which help explain who they were and what they truly wanted. Asserting that pirates came in all shapes, sexes, and sizes, this engaging study ultimately portrays pirates not just as mere thieves and killers but as radical activists with their own society and moral code fighting against an empire.
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Under the Black Flag: The Romance and the Reality of Life Among the Pirates
For this rousing, revisionist history, the former head of exhibitions at England’s National Maritime Museum has combed original documents and records to produce a most authoritative and definitive account of piracy’s “Golden Age.” As he explodes many accepted myths (i.e. “walking the plank” is pure fiction), Cordingly replaces them with a truth that is more complex and often bloodier. 16 pp. of photos. Maps.
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Blackbeard: America’s Most Notorious Pirate
This is a grand tale of Blackbeard and piracy in the Caribbean in the early 1700’s. Working against limited and sometimes contradictory historical records, the author creates a great story and divines the truth of what actually happened in that period of time. Most of all, this is a well written book that encourages you to flip to the next page. The narration is crisp and paints a vivid picture of the times. The research is well done and draws the complete scene, understanding the main people, their motivating factors, and how they all collated to form history.
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Jose’ Gaspar: The Last Marauder
This is the saga of Jose’ Gaspar…. a notorius pirate of the 19th century off the Florida Coast. His life and times are shrouded in mystery, intrigue and violence. His cruelty and pirating lifestyle fascinates the reader – a Robin Hood Scoundrel.
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The Lost Fleet: The Discovery of a Sunken Armada from the Golden Age of Piracy
An extraordinary and dramatic tale of shipwrecks, underwater discovery, and the dawn of the golden age of piracy.

On January 2, 1678, a fleet of French ships sank in the Caribbean Sea, one hundred miles off the Venezuelan coast, on the killer reef of Las Aves Island. These wrecks, which claimed more than 1,200 lives, proved disastrous for French naval power in the region and sparked the rise of a golden age of piracy, an era that was forever to alter the shape of the Americas. In The Lost Fleet, writer, explorer, and deep-sea diver Barry Clifford interweaves the dramatic tale of this maritime catastrophe — and the dangerous upsurge of piracy in the world’s seas — with the contemporary account of his own expedition to document and explore the wrecks.

Tracing the lives of fabled pirates like the Chevalier de Grammont, Nikolaas Van Hoorn, Thomas Paine, and Jean Comte d’EstrÉes, The Lost Fleet delivers a stunning portrait of a dark age, rich with historical detail and romantic drama. Toward the end of the eighteenth century, the outcasts of European society came together to form a democracy of buccaneers, settling on a string of islands off the African coast. From there, the pirates made their fame and fortune by haunting the world’s oceans, wreaking havoc on the settlements along the Spanish main and — often enlisted by French and English governments — sacking ships, ports, and coastal towns.

Now, two hundred and fifty years later, Barry Clifford has followed the pirates’ destructive wake around the world all the way back to Venezuela. With the help of a remarkably accurate map, drawn by Jean Comte d’EstrÉes (the captain of the lost French fleet) himself, Clifford was able to locate the exact site of the disaster and the wreckage of the once mighty armada.

Beautifully told, epic in scope, and steeped in period detail, The Lost Fleet is a mesmerizing account of historical discovery and underwater reclamation for anyone with a heart for adventure and history, myth, and treasure hunting.
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