Joseph Rivers was a rarity: a pirate with a long resume. Most pirates died young, sometimes at the end of an executioner's rope. Others snared their loot, then took early retirement. Not Rivers.

His career as a pirate spanned almost two decades, and not even his arrest in 1701 slowed him down. Joining Samuel Bellamy about 1715, he was probably one of the most seasoned men aboard the Whydah. Younger, brasher pirates may have rolled their eyes as he spun stories of battling the British Royal Navy. But they knew where to get survival tips.