In this Aug. 14, 2017 photo, Marie Kesten Zahn, an archaeologist and education coordinator at the Whydah Pirate Museum in West Yarmouth, Mass., probes the concretion surrounding a leg bone that was salvaged from the Whydah shipwreck off the coast of Wellfleet on Cape Cod. Researchers are working to determine if the remains belong to Samuel "Black Sam" Bellamy, the captain of the ship. (Merrily Cassidy/Cape Cod Times via AP)

Was pirate Black Sam Bellamy found? DNA test could tell

February 19, 2018 - 7:56 pm

YARMOUTH, Mass. (AP) — Researchers are working to use DNA to identify whether a human bone recovered from a Cape Cod shipwreck belongs to the infamous pirate Samuel "Black Sam" Bellamy.

The Whydah (WIH'-duh) Pirate Museum in Yarmouth, Massachusetts, publicly displayed the bone Monday. It was found near what's believed to be Bellamy's pistol.

The objects were pulled from the Whydah Gally (GAH'-lee) shipwreck several years ago.

The museum has enlisted forensic scientists to extract DNA and compare it with DNA from a living Bellamy descendant. Testing will take about a month.

The Whydah sank in 1717. The wreck was discovered in 1984. Most of its treasure is thought to remain on the ocean floor.

Forbes has listed Bellamy as the highest-earning pirate ever, plundering about $120 million worth of treasure in a little over a year.

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