�March 4 to August 21, “Real Pirates: the
he pirates have invaded Denver! From
Untold Story of the Whydah from Slave Ship to Pirate Ship” will be on display at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science (DMNS). The exhibit, courtesy of National Geographic, Arts and Exhibitions International and AEG Exhibitions, is a must-see for fans of Pirates, and for people who need something to do on a boring day. The exhibit tells the story of Sam Bellamy, a man who became a pirate so he could earn money to marry his beloved Maria Hallett. Before he could return to her, however, after making his fortune as a pirate, he died when a storm struck the ship and caused it to sink. To be honest, I’m not a major museum fan, and I don’t exactly have the greatest opinion of pirates in general. As I walked into the museum, images of “Pirates of the Caribbean,” and other tacky pirate cliches began to enter my mind, leaving an unfriendly feeling in my stomach. But all those feelings disappeared when I entered the exhibit. As I entered, the bell of the Whydah that rang repeatedly as the ship was sinking during a storm, sat hauntingly in a foggy case of water. Immediately, I was sucked into the world of Sam Bellamy and the world of “The Golden Age of Piracy.” Making my way through the exhibit, I repeatedly stopped as interesting artifact after artifact caught my attention, and drew me toward them. Images of the treacherous Middle Passage slave route, and gleaming troves of treasure left me heartbroken and excited at the same time. And then there was the ship, which was quite possibly the coolest part of the tour. In the middle of the exhibit sits a life-sized model of the Whydah ship. I entered onto the ship’s deck, and then made my way underneath as the wax figure pirates with voice overs narrated my journey, giving me a taste of what they experienced. As I left, I felt a need to turn around and experience it just once more. I didn’t want to leave! I wanted to go back inside and learn more about Sam Bellamy and his crew of beloved pirates. The tragic story of the Whydah, while more than 300 years old, delivered an emotional punch to the patrons of the exhibit. “Real Pirates: the Untold Story of the Whydah from Slave Ship to Pirate Ship,” was truly an amazing experience, and I highly recommend it for people of any age. Transport yourself back to the “Golden Age of Piracy,” and let your inner scallywag out! tyler blair
Smoky Hill High school Newspaper, Issue 5, 2011.