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CAPTAIN JOHN WARD

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CAPTAIN JOHN WARD

Captain John Ward, our "most notorious pirate," was born at Feversham, in Kent, about the year 1555. We first hear of him as a fisherman of that town, the child of mean parents, of "estate lowe," and of "hope," or expectations, still less. It has been stated that, at one time, presumably in his youth, he made one of a buccaneering party in the West Indies. It is highly probable that he learned the crafts of seamanship and navigation as a mariner in one of the many raids against the Spaniards, between the years 1570 and 1596. The Spanish Main, no less than the English Channel at that time, was a very pleasant place for a pirate; and Ward, in later years, talked mournfully of the good days he had had in his youth, "robbing at will, and counting the world but a garden where he walked for sport." After the death of Drake, in 1596, he seems to have been a seaman aboard one of the Queen's ships on a voyage to Portugal.