The New Jersey coast (8) has yielded up some pirate coins now and then. This, too, was along the route of pirates running into New York. But most of the searching along that coast has been unrewarding. One property owner on the route of the new Garden State Parkway sold his land to the state with the reservation that he retained rights to any pirate gold the engineers found on it. They found none (they said). As in Maine, the best guides are local experts.
Delaware Bay (9) is supposed to be the resting place of an enormous cache belonging to Pirate Jean Lafitte. It was buried there, legend says, by his lieutenant, Dominique You. Where? No one knows.
Chesapeake Bay (10) was second only to Long Island Sound as a pirate highway. Its shores, less crowded than those of the sound, should be rich treasure grounds.
But even richer, in treasure and story, is the Cape Hatteras area (11). On the eve of his battle with Lieutenant Maynard, at Ocracoke, when he first realized that he was in the toughest spot of his career, Blackbeard was asked by one of his men if he had any treasure buried. He said yes. Another asked him where it was, explaining that it would be too bad for it all to be lost if Blackbeard should die in the morning. Blackbeard was drunk but not that drunk. "Nobody but I and the Devil know where it is," he said, "and the longest liver shall take all."
Some plunder was found ashore at Ocracoke next day after Blackbeard's death. No attempt had been made to hide it. Blackbeard had had an extremely wealthy cruise. It is difficult to believe that he did not secrete the most valuable gold, silver and jewels somewhere on Ocracoke's beaches that night. Or perhaps it was his custom to bury caches along the shores of the Carolinas each time before going into his Ocracoke hideout. It has been said that a Blackbeard hoard was buried in York River, but none of it has been found. A few pirate coins have turned up along the beaches running down the coast from Cape Hatteras. This area is well worth some more searching. There are few more attractive digging grounds anyway.
Cape Fear (12) is where Stede Bonnet spent an anxious night waiting for the next morning's battle, which was his last. He should have buried whatever gold and silver he had somewhere about here. This was a Blackbeard haunt too.
Charleston (13) was particularly plagued by pirates, who lay off the harbor trapping merchantmen on their way in and out through the narrow entrance. Many of the pirates went ashore on Sullivans Island. The digging there should be productive.
Amelia Island (14), just north of Jacksonville, Fla., was a convenient pirate rendezvous after a raid in the Straits of Florida. No one knows how much plunder was buried there over the years; but more than $170,000 has been dug up already.
The Florida Keys (15) were also handy to pirates working the straits. Almost any of the keys and islands around the tip of Florida should be worth a look.
There are more than famous shells along Florida's west coast (16). The latter-day pirates, notably Gasparilla and Lafitte, ruled these waters, and evidences of them have been found throughout the area. The best spots: Gasparilla Island; Captiva Island (so named because Gasparilla kept his women captives there); and the hundreds of islets below New Orleans, where Lafitte and his men hung out.