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Deposition of Abijah Savage at Antigua—30 Nov 1716

Deposition – Abijah Savage—30 Nov 1716

"Deposition of Abijah Savage, Commander of the Sloop Bonetta of Antigua before His Excellency Walter Hamilton". Antigua. November 30, 1716. CO 157/11, no.45iii.


...Coming from the Island of Jamaica to this Island of Antigua he met with two large sloops between the Islands of St. Thomas and St. Cruize [St. Croix] on the ninth day of November about six of the clock in the morning, both of which in a little time after gave him chase, and between twelve and one (the winds proving small) they came up with him and fired a Cannon Ball, one of them (which afterwards proved chiefly navigated with French Men) first Hoisting a Black Flag to his Masthead, whereupon the Deponent struck his sails, hoisted out his Boat, and went on board them, who detained and kept him and the Sloop's Crew with the Passengers that were on board until the twenty fourth day of the same Month, at which time they discharged the deponent and the rest, first taking from them several of their cloaths and other things particularly a Negro Man, and an Indian Boy belonging to Mr. Benjamin Wickham of this Island who was on board. The Deponent further saith that during the time He was on board the said Pirates they took a French Ship, and six sail of small vessels all of which (after taking from them what they thought convenient) they discharged at the same time they [permitted?] him to come away the ship excepted. The Deponent also saith that one of the said sloops called the Mary Anne [Marianne] was commanded as he was told by one Samuel Bellamy who declared himself to be an Englishman born in London, and that the other called the Postillion was commanded by one Louis LeBoure [LeVasseur] who was a French Man and had his Sloop chiefly Navigated with Men of that Nation. That each of the said sloops were mounted with eight Guns, and had betwixt 80 or 90 men a piece on Board. That whilst he was in custody of the Pirates, He and all his sloop's Crew were kept at the Island of Saint Cruise, where the Pirates anchored for great part of the time. That the Mary Anne was chiefly Navigated with Englishmen, and that a little before they discharged him they only wanted a Ship of Provisions and to exchange their sloops for a Ship, which if they but get fit for their Turn they [thought they?] would go further believing that they should be able to conquer and [thereby?] make a voyage. The Deponent also saith, that there were on board the Mary Anne Several Persons who went by the Following Names: William Main Master, John Fletcher Quartermaster, one Ferguson Surgeon, One Paul Williams a Goldsmith born in New England, One John Baker born in some part of England, One William Osbourne Gunner's Mate, One Thomas Bernard a Bermudian, One Robert Danzy and one Wood both born in Great Britain, as also One William Lee, and one Edward Moon but where born the Deponent could not learn but the latter formerly sailed with one Capt. Pinkethman --a Privateer. That there was on board another Person who went by the name of Joseph Rivers, who as this Deponent understood was on board the Pirate [La Paix, commanded by Louis Guittar] that was taken on the Coast of Virginia during the government of Colonel Nicholson. The Deponent further saith that he could not learn the names of any of the Men on board the Postillion excepting the Quarter Master who went by the Name of De Lorme. He further saith, that one John King who was coming as a passenger with him from the said Island of Jamaica to the Island of Antigua deserted his sloop, and went with the Pirates and was so far from being forced or compelled thereto by them as the deponent could perceive or learn that he declared he would Kill himself if he was Restrained, and even threatned his Mother who was then on Board as a Passenger with the Deponent.