Sack of Baltimore took place on June 20, 1631, when the village
of Baltimore, West Cork, Ireland, was attacked by Algerian pirates from
the North African Barbary Coast, led
by a Dutch captain turned pirate,
Jan Janszoon van Haarlem, also known as
Murat Reis the Younger.
Murat's force was led to the village
by a man called Hackett, the captain of a fishing boat he had
captured earlier, in exchange for his freedom (it brought Hackett
no luck, as he was later hanged for his part in aiding the
raiders). The raid was one of Murat Reis' many profitable
adventures against European communities.
Murat's crew was made up of Dutchmen
and Ottoman Turks
. They launched their covert
attack on the remote village on June 20th 1631, capturing 108
English planters and local Irish people, but not much in terms of
valuable treasure. Almost all of the villagers were put in irons
and taken to a life of slavery in
. Some prisoners were destined to live out their
days as galley slaves
in the bellies
of pirate ships, while others would spend long years in the
seclusion of the Sultan's harem
or within the
walls of the Sultan
's palace as laborers.
Only two of them ever saw Ireland again.
The incident inspired Thomas Osborne Davis
to write his famous poem, The Sack of Baltimore
detailed account of the sack of Baltimore can be found in the book
The Stolen Village: Baltimore and the Barbary Pirates
The Turkish abductions