Captain Kidd’s Pirate Treasure Found
A large 110-pound silver bar thought to be from the treasure captured by the notorious 17th century Scottish pirate Captain William Kidd, who was ultimately hanged for his misdeeds, has been found off Madagascar’s eastern coast.
The discovery was made by the American underwater explorer Barry Clifford near the island of Sainte Maire.
“Captain’s Kidd’s treasure is the stuff of legends. People have been looking for it for 300 years. To literally have it hit me on the head – I thought what the heck just happened to me. I really didn’t expect this,” Mr Clifford said.
“There’s more down there. I know the whole bottom of the cavity where I found the silver bar is filled with metal. It’s too murky down there to see what metal, but my metal detector tells me there is metal on all sides.”
Kidd, who is known to have sailed to Sainte Maire, was executed in 1701 for piracy, and his body was dipped in tar and hung by chains along the River Thames to serve as a warning to would-be pirates. At the time of his capture, Kidd had just returned from plunder in the Indian Ocean.
Captain Kidd always maintained his innocence, claiming authorisation from the British government to seize the treasure carried on a ship bearing a French ‘flag of convenience’.
Few pirate ship wrecks have ever been discovered and scepticism remains that this is indeed Kidd’s treasure, the legend of which inspired Robert Louis Stevenson’s novel ‘Treasure Island’.