Buccaneering Era > Sack of Puerto Principe
Sack of Puerto Principe
The Sack of Puerto Principe was a famous buccaneer raid that was led by Henry Morgan on the Spanish settlement of Puerto Principe on the coast of Cuba in 1667. Earlier that year he was commissioned by the governor of Jamaica named Thomas Modyford to capture some Spanish in order to discover the details of a perceived plan to seize the island back from the British.
Collecting 10 ships with 500 men, Morgan landed on the island and captured and sacked Puerto Principe (Camagüey).
Modyford almost immediately entrusted Morgan with another expedition against the Spaniards, and he proceeded to ravage the coast of Cuba. In a meeting held by Morgan prior to the start of their journey, he proposed that the fleet attack Havana. Although this suggestion showed his arrogance, after much debate it was decided that they did not have enough men to take Havana, so they decided instead to take Puerto Principe. While on their quest for Spanish ships, Morgan's fleet encountered heavy storms that brought them to the south shore of modern-day Cuba as opposed to the north shore where they had originally aimed.
Due to the rough journey, Morgan's men had very little food and water and were forced to land on the south shore to search for provisions instead of continuing on to the north shore of Cuba. Once on land, the crew met a French crew that had also been driven ashore in search of provisions and decided to join forces. A Spanish prisoner that Morgan held hostage escaped and warned the citizens of Puerto Principe of the impending attack.
The citizens quickly deserted the town with their valuables, leaving very little for the buccaneers. After searching the town and torturing its residents for information regarding the location of their riches, Morgan's fleet was only able to gather fifty-thousand pieces of eight. This was not enough to pay off the debts that the buccaneers had accumulated back in Jamaica, so they were required to find more riches before returning to Port Royal.
- Sack of Santiago de Cuba (1662)
- Sack of Campeche (1663)
- Sack of Puerto Principe (1667)
- Sack of Panama (1670)
- Chepo Expedition (1679)
- Pacific Adventure (1680)
- Blockade of Cartagena (1683)
- Sack of Veracruz (1683)
- Sack of Cartagena (1697)