Governor Charles Eden

Charles, Eden (1673-1722) was the governor of North Carolina during era of the Flying Gang pirates. In 1718, Stede Bonnet and, separately, Blackbeard journeyed to Bath, the colony’s sleepy village capital, to take the king’s pardon from Gov. Eden. Blackbeard and Eden apparently came to some sort of arrangement, as the arch-pirate promptly settled in Bath, set up an underground piracy operation and channelled at least once large consignment of plunder to Eden and his underling, Tobias Knight.

Blackbeard married a local girl and, according to A General History of the Pyrates, Eden presided over the ceremony.

When Edward Mosely, a leading colonist, denounced Eden for failing to apprehend Blackbeard, and was arrested for his troubles. While Eden was officially cleared of wrongdoing, his reputation ever recovered.

After his death, of yellow fever, he was buried in what is now Bertie County, beneath a tombstone that noted that he had “died much lamented.”

Image Credits: “Photograph, Accession #: H.1946.14.30.” 1900-1920. North Carolina Museum of History.