|James Anthony Vincent Reid III esq.|
The Jolly Roger flag, flown from the masts of the Silvanna.
|Years active||1718 – 1729|
|Base of operations||Caribbean|
Captain James Anthony Vincent Reid III esq. (Irish: Séamas Antaine Uinseann Ó'Maoildearg, born 3rd February 1690) is a notorious Irish pirate on the Barbary Coast and Caribbean during the early 18th century, a period referred to as the Golden Age of Piracy. James ("Jim") is best known for his short temper and almost complete intolerance for heat.
A renowned master of sword and pistol, Jim was also an expert diplomat, talking his way out of any number of seemingly hopeless situations. Many texts show how empty gestures and the "gift of the gab" kept him from the guillotine.
Early Life (1690-1709)
Born in Ballybricken (Baile Bhricín) Waterford City in 1690 to a Catholic family, his father was an activist for Irish independence, and was killed in 1691 at the Battle of the Boyne leaving the mother to raise the children alone. Jim had two older sisters, both who emigrated to America during his childhood.
At this time, Irish Catholics were oppressed by anti-Catholic Penal Laws which were enacted and enforced by the British and Protestant-dominated Irish parliament. He completed his education in a hedge school and from the various teachings of his family members. The activist in his bloodline lived on and in his early teenage years, Jim began to train with the sword and soon joined a group of ropairí. He was a highly regarded fighter and some suggest that he may have had a hand in the formation of the Whiteboys.
Jim spent much of his late-teen years moving around the Irish countryside, working with secret agrarian organizations in Wicklow, Cork, and Limerick. It was in Galway in 1707 he met Ofelia O'Toole, the half-Irish, half-Spanish commander. Together they incited a coup d'état in the declining city, but British informers and spies managed to foil it before they could properly gather. Ofelia fled from Galway bay in her ship, the Silvanna, and Jim travelled back to Waterford in a hope to warn his comrades of a British backlash.
Shortly after arriving home, Jim rendezvoused with Ofelia at Dunmore East and they fled the country, heading to her home town of València, landing in 1709. Word of their rebellious activities in Ireland would reach Spain before them, but even in it's current state, it was still safer than Protestant-dominated Ireland.
Spain & the Barbary Corsairs (1709-1711)
After reaching Spain, Ofelia was released from her official role of Commander in light of what had happened in Ireland, although she was still paid and pardoned for various missions as a sanctioned Privateer. Jim was left to make a new life for himself and decided staying on the Silvanna was his only viable option, the beginning of the Age of Enlightenment meant the political situation was less than stable in Spain.
The Silvanna sailed mainly on the Barbary Coast between 1709 and 1710, fighting a never-ending battle of aggression against the Ottoman Corsairs. It was during this time that infamousy and tavern tales of great deeds created a sense of fear amongst the Ottomans, as the Silvanna sacked and looted indescriminatly any of the slave traders unfortunate enough to cross her path. It's estimated that more than 100 ships (and some notable characters) were sunk by the Silvanna on the Barbary Coast.
As a Privateer, it was the duty of Ofelia to take the Silvanna into battle in the name of Spain if needed. Such a time arose after the War of the Quadruple Alliance, where she was tasked with escorting a British merchant ship across the Atlantic to the New World.