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Thread: pirate headstone in cemetary, photos added.

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  1. #16
    us
    Nov 2011
    14
    Metal Detecting

    Re: pirate headstone in cemetary, photos added.

    [quote=Felinepeachy ]
    From what I've been reading the scull and cross bones on headstones doesn't have anything to do with pirates.
    Is it possible that the grave contains the remains of a Freemason, and the Fremasons used this symbol to denote a Master Mason?

    I have often wondered how people like the author of that article know so much about Masons but are not Masons.


  2. #17
    us
    NJ

    Nov 2006
    Middlesex County, New Jersey
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    Re: pirate headstone in cemetary, photos added.

    We have some in my church's graveyard...just a design used in the 1700s.

    NJ
    liftloop likes this.

  3. #18
    us
    Oct 2009
    resaca GA
    whites MXT
    22
    Relic Hunting

    Re: pirate headstone in cemetary, photos added.

    thats some great information. i guess i need to research about them.

  4. #19

    Dec 2003
    Western Schuylkill County
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    Re: pirate headstone in cemetary, photos added.

    According to Habenstein and Lamers “The History of Funeral Directing”, 1962:201), the imminent millennialism sensed by the Puritans and their contempt for moral existence led to the skull and crossbones being the most persistent tombstone symbol of early New England days


    http://mod1953.wordpress.com/category/graveyards/

  5. #20
    us
    da book worm--researcher

    Feb 2007
    callahan,fl
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    Re: pirate headstone in cemetary, photos added.

    might be unknown persons that died thus no name * skull and crossed bones -meant "death" thats why it was used as a symbol on deadly mixture and poison bottles so folks that could not read would know it had dangerous contents
    liftloop likes this.

  6. #21
    us
    Dec 2010
    Pike County Kentucky
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    Re: pirate headstone in cemetary, photos added.

    Jeep thats awesome!
    Relicminer

  7. #22
    us
    May 2013
    Rockwell, NC
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    Are there pirates buried at Thyatira?

    Publication Salisbury Post
    Date July 03, 2006
    Section(s) Lifestyle
    Page 0
    Byline
    Brief Photo:53147,left,;By Susan Shinn
    Salisbury Post

    "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest" just might be biggest movie blockbuster of the summer.

    But who needs Johnny Depp when we have pirates right here in Rowan County?

    Maybe.

    For years, t




    By Susan Shinn

    Salisbury Post

    "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest" just might be biggest movie blockbuster of the summer.

    But who needs Johnny Depp when we have pirates right here in Rowan County?

    Maybe.

    For years, the legend has been told and retold about the pirates that are buried at Thyatira Presbyterian Church in Mount Ulla.

    It's just a story, insists Susan Waller, a retired educator. But it's one she's told groups of schoolchildren who visited the cemetery over the years.

    The story she tells is this: These four pirates decided they couldn't live their lives the way they were, so they made their way inland, to Millbridge and Thyatira Church. They married and lived respectable lives.

    But one day, they were found out.

    They were tried and hanged. The families begged the church to let them be buried inside the cemetery walls. In those days, thieves weren't allowed to be buried on sacred ground.

    The church relented, but chiseled only skulls and crossbones in the four small markers.

    "There's not a name and there's not a date, so that's the mystery," Waller says.

    The pirates got a one-line sentence in James Brawley's history of Rowan County. When discussing the Thyatira cemetery, Brawley wrote: "There are two markers said to represent the burying places of pirates."

    Over the years, there have been stories written about two or three markers. There are actually four there today.

    The late Heath Thomas wrote a slightly different version of the pirate story in a 1961 Post article.

    Thomas wrote:

    "Her Majesty's Navy captured a crew of pirates on North Carolina's wild, lonely coast. They were brought ashore, tried before His Majesty's judge and sentenced to the scaffold.

    "Three made their escape and headed to the frontier West -- of which then Rowan was the last outpost.

    "They settled here, married and begot progeny.

    "One died before the settlers knew about his past and he was given a Christian burial here at old Thyatira where the Scots organized the church about 1753.

    "Later the other two of the pirate trio died, both within the year. But the whispers had come up from the coast.

    "They had pillaged and murdered along the Outer Banks and the Spanish Main. They were fugitives from the scaffold.

    "The dour Scots didn't want the pirates to contaminate their sacred burial ground.

    "But a dead man must be buried somwhere. The congregation agreed to the burials, but on the condition that the markers carry an awful warning to the un-Godly."

    Poppycock, says Gary Freeze.

    (OK, maybe he didn't actually say the word "poppycock," but don't you think it sounds kinda pirate-ish?)

    "Where's the ocean? Where are the waterways?" asks Freeze, a history professor at Catawba College who specializes in North Carolina history.

    It's illogical that pirates would be buried in those graves, Freeze asserts.

    "Piracy ended in the Atlantic in the 1720s," he says. "There's no record of anyone accused of being a pirate."

    For his part in the conundrum, Freeze asked a psychic who she thought was in the graves. She told him she thought that children were buried there.

    The skull and crossbones symbol has been used as a sign of disease.

    But why no names, no dates?

    That is a mystery, Freeze admits.

    Pirates may or may not at Thyatira, but those who definitely rest inside the stone walls include Elizabeth Maxwell Steele, who gave gold and silver to Nathaniel Greene during the Revolutionary War; John and Jean Knox, great-grandparents of President John Knox Polk; Francis and Mathew Locke, early patriots; and Samuel McCorkle, Thyatira's first pastor and a founder of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

    And befitting the area of the county, there are scads of Halls and Knoxes and Grahams and Steeles and Sloans.

    But maybe no pirates.

    "If you wanna meet pirates, go see Johnny Depp," Freeze says.

    Interestingly enough, Freeze notes that the first "Pirates of the Caribbean" movie was fairly accurate in its interpretation of costumes and pirate life in general.

    Still...

    Go and visit Thyatira on a summer evening, when the air is cool and the sun is slowly sinking below the tall trees. Look and listen and take in the peaceful scene. Study those mysterious grave markers. You might conclude that this just may be the resting place of two, three, four pirates.

    Maybe.

    Contact Susan Shinn at 704-797-4289 or sshinn@salisburypost.com.

  8. #23
    us
    May 2013
    Rockwell, NC
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    I hope that helps you guys out. And explains the reason for the Skull & Cross Bones on those four Markers.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Three_Pirate_Graves,_Thyatira_Presbyterian_Church_Cemetery,_Rowan_County,_NC.JPG 
Views:	115 
Size:	158.5 KB 
ID:	801475  

  9. #24
    us
    May 2013
    Rockwell, NC
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    Found a better photo showing ALL four grave markers.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	ThyatiraPresbyterianPirateGravesGroup.jpg 
Views:	133 
Size:	825.5 KB 
ID:	801476  

  10. #25
    donald peterson

    Jan 2013
    somewhere between flagstaff, preskit
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  11. #26
    us
    May 2013
    Rockwell, NC
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    No. These were pirates.

  12. #27

    Jul 2012
    Greeneville , TN
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    cute story , but even the locals agree there is no proof it is pirates and the storys in the paper are word of mouth not real proof, odds are no one will know for sure.

  13. #28
    us
    May 2013
    Rockwell, NC
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    10. Three PIRATE stones. Tradition tells of three pirates who escaped on
    the coast and made their way inland, settling in Rowan County where they
    became farmers. They were later recognized, convicted and executed and
    their burial in the cemetery was permitted only if the skull and
    crossbones, or just the crossbones were used on their gravestones.

    The foregoing is taken from the descriptive pamphlet available at the church. <-----

  14. #29
    ca
    Upper Fort Garry

    Jul 2012
    In da bush
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    Google 18th century Catholic crosses, medallions, etc. and you will find a skull and cross bones symbology.

    Or it could be the bloodlines belonging to the skull and cross bone society like the Bush family who meet at the Bohemian Grove every year.

    Or maybe they died from a contagious disease and this symbol warns people...... "Poison!"

    Many possibilities outside of pirates.

    Cheers,
    Dave.
    A metal detector can only do so much..........
    It's up to you to do the rest!

  15. #30

    Jul 2012
    Greeneville , TN
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    if you look at the Ancestory.com article that was posted you will see it is dated 1972 , and the Legend is it was pirates, no where does it ever say nor any article that there is proof they are pirates .
    every article says plainly some believe and some do not , that they are pirates . some of the graves are from the 1700. that is a long time for rumors and legends to grow. when they find town records at the courthouse saying 3 pirates were found and hung then i will believe it.
    until then i can see several options that other posters have pointed out that are very good options.

 

 
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