ATLANTIC BEACH, NC (WWAY) – Two weapons last touched by pirates almost 300 years ago surfaced from the depths of the Atlantic Ocean and are among new artifacts captured in a fall dive expedition.
Cannon balls, rigging gear and sounding weights encased in a cement-like shell were recovered Monday from Blackbeard’s wrecked flagship, Queen Anne’s Revenge.
Researchers from the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources’ Underwater Archeology Branch recovered two of the smaller cannons from the shipwreck. This makes a total of 17 cannons that have been reclaimed from the wreck site near Beaufort.
The iron cannons weigh about 500 pounds each, unlike the pair of 2,000 pound cannons that were recovered in June. These smaller cannons could be raised and transported on the work boat, so another vessel for the lift was unneeded.
The cannons and other artifacts will go to the QAR lab for conservation.
Recovery of eight cannons was the plan for the earlier dive, but was prevented by unfavorable sea conditions. Four of the eight cannons are still underwater.
The Queen Anne’s Revenge ran aground in Beaufort in June 1718. Intersal, Inc., a private research firm, discovered the site believed to be Queen Anne’s Revenge Nov. 21, 1996.