MIDLAND, NC Feb. 6, 2014 – Actual treasures from the shipwreck of Blackbeard the Pirate are traveling the state and Reed Gold Mine will host this incredible exhibit for six weeks. Blackbeard’s Queen’s Anne’s Revenge: 1718 features real items from the shipwreck of Blackbeard the Pirate.
The Queen Anne’s Revenge ran aground near Beaufort in 1718. It is only in the past few years that these artifacts have been raised from the depths of the ocean and are now traveling the state, on loan from the N.C. Maritime Museum in Beaufort.
Blackbeard’s Queen Anne’s Revenge displays artifacts that represent weaponry, nautical tools and personal items. Items range from what one would expect on a pirate ship, such as cannonballs, lead shot, gun flint, spikes and grinding stones, while others represent normal life in the 19th century, such as dinner plates, a pipe stem and bowl, thumb screws and cask hoops.
At Reed Gold Mine, a ribbon-cutting event will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 22, officially opening the event. Throughout the day visitors can complete scavenger hunts, visit the coloring/craft area and interact with living historians.
The Queen Anne’s Revenge traveling exhibit, however, is about more than Blackbeard and pirates. It’s about educating the next generation on colonial life. It has also created a true economic impact in the Crystal Coast region and created partnerships to foster breakthroughs in archaeological research.
The raising of artifacts from the Queen Anne’s Revenge draws together some of the leading experts in the field from institutions including East Carolina University, N.C. Marine Fisheries and the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources to collaborate and use the latest techniques in the science of preservation. The project also provides students with hands-on learning experiences in maritime history, archaeology and preservation.
Stories in publications like National Geographic and the Los Angeles Times have helped raise the profile of the region. Plus, the Blackbeard exhibit at the N.C. Maritime Museum at Beaufort has drawn more than 300,000 visitors in the past year alone.
With the Queen Anne’s Revenge traveling exhibit that same level of education and economic impact can now stretch across the entire state.
Reed Gold Mine preserves the site of the first documented discovery of gold in the United States. Restored mine tunnels are shown to visitors by interpreters who share the story of that first discovery and the work of the miners to retrieve gold from the creek bed and from solid rock. Reed Gold mine further interprets the history of North Carolina’s mining heritage through exhibits, special events and off-site presentations. Panning for gold is a popular hands-on activity in warm months. Interpreters and programs also interpret the importance of gold, mining and geology in our culture and as an economic and social force in the region.
Reed Gold Mine State Historic Site is part of the N.C. Division of State Historic Sites in the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources.