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Katherine Howe and The Penguin Book of Pirates Book Launch

April 30 @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm


Tuesday April 30, 2024 from 6pm-7pm
Colony House, Washington Square, Newport, RI
Admission $15-$20 per person

Avast ye hearties! The book launch for The Penguin Book of Pirates will take place in a city that was known for piracy and privateering, Newport, RI. Join the Newport Historical Society, in partnership with Charter Books, on Tuesday April 30, 2024 at 6pm for a presentation by editor and New York Times bestselling author Katherine Howe alongside Daphne Palmer Geanacopoulos, author of The Pirate’s Wife.

Ms. Howe will highlight real-life accounts of the world’s most notorious pirates, both men and women, from the Golden Age of Piracy and beyond. She’ll share how Newport nurtured a vibrant economy based on smuggling and extralegal mercantile ventures, featuring a “booty” of real-life accounts of the world’s most notorious pirates.

Katherine Howe, an award-winning historian and novelist, is a direct descendant of a nineteenth-century sailor who battled pirates on the high seas as well as three women who were tried for witchcraft in Salem. She is the editor of The Penguin Book of Pirates and The Penguin Book of Witches; the author of the novels A True Account: Hannah Masury’s Sojourn Amongst the Pyrates, written by herself and The Daughters of Temperance Hobbs, the New York Times bestselling novels The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane and The House of Velvet and Glass, and the young adult novels Conversion and The Appearance of Annie van Sinderen. In addition, she is also the the coauthor with Anderson Cooper of the New York Times bestsellers Vanderbilt: The Rise and Fall of an American Dynasty and Astor: The Rise and Fall of an American Fortune. A native Houstonian, she lives and sails with her family in New England.

Daphne Palmer Geanacopoulos, who had presented at the Newport Historical Society in 2023, will share her research regarding the Newport jeweler turned pirate Paulsgrave Williams who had deep roots and family ties on Block Island. It is there, the young and impressionable Paulsgrave met the notorious pirate Captain William Kidd and his wife Sarah, who is the focus of The Pirate’s Wife. In 1715, Paulsgrave abandoned his life in Newport leaving his wife, Elizabeth, and their three children behind. He and his friend, Samuel Bellamy, turned pirate and became two of the most successful pirates of the Golden Age capturing over fifty ships and tons of stolen treasure.

Dr. Geanacopoulos is a historian, journalist, and author of The Pirate Next Door: The Untold Story of Eighteenth Century Pirates’ Wives, Families and Communities. Her writing has appeared in The New York Times, the Washington Post, Southern Living, Virginia Business and other outlets.

A Q&A and book signing will follow their discussion. The Penguin Book of Pirates and The Pirate’s Wife will be available to purchase. This event takes place at a site that once witnessed pirate trials, the historic Colony House located at the top of Washington Square. Doors open at 5:30pm and the program begins promptly at 6pm. “Carousers” (reckless people) will be turned away, but general admission tickets cost $20 per person and $15 for Newport Historical Society members along with active-duty military. Space is limited, advance ticket purchase is recommended.


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April 30
6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Event Category:


Newport Historical Society