Sunday, September 01, 2013

Pewter Plates

Several weeks ago one of my neighbors called and left a message on my phone. He had just acquired some pewter plates that he wanted me to see.

This dinnerware (the large plate is about 12" in diameter) was salvaged at an old home site near Pamlico Sound about 75 years ago by a young girl who was visiting the island from the mainland. She recently sold the plates at a yard sale, and the buyer returned them to Ocracoke.

Two of the plates have "London" embossed on the reverse side, but we were unable to locate a date. They appear to be from the 1700s. Who knows, they may even have belonged to Blackbeard.

Click on this link to see a photo of very similar pewter plates that were salvaged from Blackbeard's flagship, the Queen Anne's Revenge: They are strikingly similar. I understand that salvors of the Queen Anne's Revenge confirm that these Ocracoke plates are of the same vintage.

Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is an account of the recent skirmishes islanders have had with North Carolina legislatures over the issue of ferry tolls...and a 1955 newspaper editorial advocating free, state-operated ferries across Hatteras Inlet. You can read it here:


  1. Anonymous9:10 AM


    This has nothing to do with your current subject but still, maybe you can help me out.

    Back in the late 70’s / early 80’s I spent a lot of time on Ocracoke. I took probably thousands of pictures there. Anyway I have had one hanging on my wall since then in poster form and I was just now courous as to who owns’ the two shrimp boats in the picture.
    It was Christmas day and very foggy when I took the picture. All you can see are the 2 bows of the shrimpers tied up right next to each other. It is a head on, bow shot; fog surrounds both boats except for the bow and maybe 20 feet past the bow toward the stern. The rigging is peaking through the fog as well and that's it. I never saw the stern so I have no idea where these two shrimpers are from.

    The name Capt’n Oz is on the bow of one and Captain Ed is on the other. Do you have any idea with the little information that I have who owned these shrimpers? Any help will be appreciated.

    Thanks Norm S.

    1. 30 - 40 years ago it was common to see dozens of trawlers in Ocracoke harbor, especially if the weather was bad. They worked Pamlico Sound fishing for shrimp. The shrimpers came from Hatteras, other towns in coastal North Carolina, South Carolina, and farther south. The only locally owned trawlers during that era were the Shi-Don-Di and the Miss Miriam. I have no idea who owned the Capt'n Oz or the Captain Ed. Maybe one of our readers knows.