Most of what is known about Blackbeard today goes back to a single source — A General History of the Robberies & Murders of the Most Notorious Pirates by Charles Captain Johnson (pseudonym), more popularly known as A General History of the Pyrates, published in 1724 and often attributed to Robinson Crusoe author, Daniel Defoe.
This is unfortunate, because A General History is rife with errors and misinformation. One can only guess this was due to either difficulty in getting the truth from those close enough to actually know the subjects, or perhaps because “Capt. Johnson” was desirous of selling books more than he was writing a true reference book, and therefore he dressed the tales up to make them more interesting.
Thanks to diligent research, we can now dispel many of the myths that have been built up around the most famous Pirate of all time, known by the dread moniker of Blackbeard.