Unless otherwise noted photo credit of the Pirate's Grave goes to Mary Whisonant.
Jean Lafitte Resources
"In 2021, a book entitled Jean Lafitte Revealed, Unraveling One of America’s Longest-Running Mysteries by Ashley Oliphant and Beth Yarbrough presents the theory that Jean Laffite, did in fact successfully change his name and live out the rest of his natural life, dying 1875 at the age of 96, under the pseudonym, “Lorenzo Ferrer” in Lincoln County, North Carolina. Ferrer is buried in a marked grave at Saint Luke's Episcopal Church in Lincolnton, North Carolina. The grave is commonly referred to as locals as “The Pirate’s Grave.” Whether or not the story is true, it would make for a great movie."
Photo: The Bettmann Archive
Interested in a souvenir from your visit to the "pirate's grave?" Call the church office to inquire how you might acquire a commemorative coin featuring Jean Lafitte!
"Little is known of Laffite’s early life, but by 1809 he and his brother Pierre apparently had established in New Orleans a blacksmith shop that reportedly served as a depot for smuggled goods and slaves brought ashore by a band of privateers."
-Britannica, The Editors of Encyclopaedia. "Jean Laffite". Encyclopedia Britannica, Invalid Date, https://www.britannica.com/biography/Jean-Laffite. Accessed 2 March 2023.
The above painting was bought in New Orleans and gifted to St. Luke's Episcopal Church.
"Rumors abounded that he had changed his name after leaving Galveston and disappeared..."
Galveston and Texas History Center
"Jean Laffite (sometimes spelled Lafitte) was a pirate and the subject of many stories of romance and adventure across the Gulf of Mexico during the early 19th century. During 1817-1820, he started a colony in Galveston and transformed the island into a hotbed of smuggling and privateering. The following guide contains resources about this iconic figure."
The American Battlefield Trust
"In 1820, the United States Navy shut down Lafitte’s smuggling operation in Spanish Texas, which is the last known record of Lafitte."
Jean Lafitte: History & Mystery
National Historical Park and Preserve Louisiana
"His exact whereabouts after that are unknown. His life and death remain as mysterious as the swamps and bayous of Barataria."
A pirate gets his due
"Laffite’s legend in Lincolnton involves a possible son by Louisa, an alleged murder at a plantation, an argument with another Frenchmen also living undercover and a sword with his initials hidden in plain sight."
The Pirate House and Jean Lafitte
Hancock County Historical Society
"But the grave was not found in the church, and so the padre inquired of some of the locals who had been there at the time of Lafitte’s burial. It is here that Stephens’ testimony, while believable, curiously lends to the possibility that Lafitte may have mysteriously vanished."
The Dread Jewish Pirate Jean Lafitte
"How the French buccaneer king and other descendants of Spain’s hidden Jews took to the high seas and revenged themselves upon the kingdom that tormented their ancestors"
Pirate Jean Laffite faked his death and moved to Lincolnton
"Laffite had some enemies and faked his death during the 1820s in the Caribbean."
The Pirate Jean Lafitte
"...U.S. Naval and Army pressure were brought to bear on the pirate operations in Texas. This pressure to end his days of Piracy resulted in his subsequent sacking and burning of Galveston and his disappearance into history."
Saving New Orleans
"What became of him after Galveston has been the subject of much contradictory speculation. He was reportedly killed in a sea battle, drowned in a hurricane, hanged by the Spanish, succumbed to disease in Mexico, and murdered by his own crew."
Jean Laffite, the plunderer
"Jean Laffite was an elegant scoundrel who, with his band of pirates, plundered British, American and Spanish vessels in the early 1800s while operating out of his stronghold at Barataria Bay, south of New Orleans."
"...Laffite suddenly picked a crew to man his favourite vessel, The Pride, burned the town, and sailed away..."
Jean Lafitte – A “Hero” Pirate
Legends of America
"He gathered his plunder into a beautiful brig called the Pride, a vessel of 14 good guns, well manned, and on an unnamed day, he sailed away, headed to the southeast. And there, authentic accounts of Jean Lafitte come to an end."
How French Pirate King Jean Lafitte Made A Fortune In The Louisiana Swamps And Helped America Defeat The British
All That’s Interesting
"As to Jean Lafitte’s fate after Galveston, one can only speculate. Some claimed he was killed out at sea while others claimed he had succumbed to disease, was captured by the Spanish, or even murdered by his own men."