56 minutes | May 22, 2022

Rebels at Sea: Privateering in the American Revolution, with Eric Jay Dolin

Eric Jay Dolin joins us this week to discuss his new book Rebels at Sea: Privateering in the American Revolution. We’ll discuss the role of privateers in the American Revolution, with a special focus on the many privateersmen who sailed out of Boston and New England. Privateers were civilian ships that were outfitted for war by optimistic investors, with volunteer crews who were willing to risk their lives fighting for a share of the profits. From the mouth of Boston Harbor to the very shores of Britain, these private warships sailed in search of rich English merchant vessels, while risking the lives and freedom of their crews. While their role is mostly forgotten today, Eric will explain how privateer crews helped turn the tide of Revolution in favor of the Americans, and we’ll discuss how our modern habit of associating privateering with piracy leads to a distaste for the privateersmen who helped win our independence. Rebels at Sea will be available in bookstores everywhere on May 31, 2022.

Full show notes: http://HUBhistory.com/249/

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Rebels at Sea

Eric Jay Dolin is the author of 15 books, including a history of the US China trade, a history of whaling, and an environmental history of Boston Harbor. His 2019 book Black Flags, Blue Waters: The Epic History of America’s Most Notorious Pirates was a finalist for the Julia Ward Howe award and a featured pick at the Mass Historical Society. His most recent book, Rebels at Sea, which shines a spotlight on piracy’s more respectable cousin the privateer, is available for preorder now, and it will be in bookstores everywhere on May 31.

Find out more about Eric and his upcoming book events on his website, and follow him on Facebook for the latest news.

Sponsored by Liberty & Co.

This week’s podcast is sponsored by Liberty & Co, who sell unique products inspired by the American Revolution. If you find yourself inspired by today’s episode, you might consider a design featuring the so-called pine tree flag or the flag of the Massachusetts naval militia. A white banner with a large green pine tree under the words “An Appeal to Heaven,” this flag was used by the fleet of ships that George Washington personally funded after arriving in Boston in the summer of 1775, by the state navy that Massachusetts fielded , and unofficially by countless privateers who sailed from Massachusetts during the Revolution.

At Liberty & Co, you can purchase this design as a t-shirt, a trucker’s hat, a sticker, or even a 3 x 5 foot flag. If that doesn’t float your boat, you can find merch with other flags of local significance, like the 1774 Taunton flag, emblazoned with the words “liberty and union,” or the New England flag, a red field with a green pine tree in a white union that is said to have flown at the Battle of Bunker Hill.

Save 20% on any purchase with the discount code HUBHISTORY.

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