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Captain Dirk Chivers

   Dirk Chivers was a Dutch pirate. He signed aboard the Portsmouth Adventure early 1694, under Captain Joseph Farrell. The ship was leaving Rhode Island for the Red Sea. Once there, Farrell helped Henry Every capture two ships rich in booty around June, 1695. While returning to Rhode Island, the ship was wrecked on Mayotte in the Comoro Islands. Farrell was rescued by Every and continued on with him, but Chivers stayed behind on Mayotte. Toward the end of 1695, Chivers signed aboard the 28 gun ship Resolution. Several months later he was made captain after a mutiny, and he renamed the ship Soldado.

   Chivers was very successful, plundering several ships rich with booty. He sailed in consort with John Hoar taking two East India Company ships. The two captured ships were ransomed. When the governor of Aden refused to pay the ransom, the pirates burned both of the ships. One of the captives from the seized vessels was Captain Sawbridge. The story go's that Sawbridge's constant complaining provoked Chiver's crew into sewing up the man's lips with a sail needle.

    In November, 1696, Chivers sailed into the harbour at Calcutta. He seized 4 ships with their crews and demanded 10,000 random for their return. Chivers sent the following message to governor stating: "We acknowledge no country, having sold our own, and as we are sure to be hanged if taken, we shall have no scruple in murdering and destroying if our demands are not granted in full." Not swayed by Chivers threat, the governor sent 10 Indian ships. When they sailed into the harbor, Chivers fled, heading for Saint Mary's Island to make repairs and arrived there in the summer of 1697.

    After sailing off to plunder more ships, Chivers captured the Sedgwick, an English ship, in April 1698. The captain of the Sedgwick was very persuasive and Chivers' crew let him keep his ship after he supplied them with rum. That September, Chivers joined forces Robert Culliford. Together they captured the Great Mohammed and 130,000. Chivers took command of the new ship and renamed her the New Soldado. Chivers returned to Saint Mary's Island. When four British battleships arrived at Saint Mary's in September 1699, Chivers sunk the New Soldado in the harbor to block the passage. Despite his efforts, he and Culliford eventually accepted a royal pardon and Chivers returned home to the Netherlands on the merchantman Vine.




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