Why would someone want to live in a place called Bald Head? Well, it is an island. Web search Bald Head Island on Google Maps. Zoom out. Notice how the island sets at the Southeastern tip of a large gouge in the North Carolina coastline, a signature feature of the handiwork of Hurricanes over thousands of years. Don’t go there if an Atlantic Hurricane moves North along the Eastern seaboard. Any other time is great! The community there is welcoming and way cool!
You will have to travel to Bald Head Island by passenger ferry. Zoom in to find the Bald Head Island Ferry on the Western side of the Cape Fear River. You will park your car there, purchase a roundtrip ticket, then enjoy the ferryboat ride to the island, where golf carts are the mode of transportation. Bald Head got its name from someone long ago who noticed that the large sand dunes behind the beaches looked like a bunch of bald heads. Not wanting to waste a good name, when the 1795 lighthouse was replaced in 1816, it was named “Old Baldy.” This lighthouse is open to visitors.
Some films have been produced on the island. You may recognize backdrop from the film, “Weekend at Bernie’s.” The island has a golf course. I noticed that two of the main golf cart trails that pass near the course are named for pirates: Edward Teach and Stede Bonnet. In the United States, we stopped hearing about active pirates in the mid 1700’s, probably around the time the first inhabitants arrived on Bald Head Island. So, where did the pirates go? Did they become golfers?
There is a wedding chapel on the island, but no organized churches. That is sad, but the ferry works both ways. There are plenty of Christian Churches on the mainland. As you take the ferry across the mouth of the Cape Fear River, you will pass the North Carolina Baptist Assembly on your left. They manage a Christian Retreat – and they own a fort!
I have read articles that attest to Atlantic and Caribbean pirates as being Christian. Some details describe new recruits as being sworn into pirate crews in a ceremony. The initiates placed one hand on the Bible. Other articles mention a chaplain as being part of the crew. My explanation: In the 17th and 18th centuries, many poor young men were kidnapped in England, Scotland, Ireland, and Wales and forced to serve as seamen on British Navy and Merchant ships. Likely, many of the kidnapped were Christians.
How would you react if a pirate crew defeated your oppressors and offered you an equal share in the spoils if you joined them willingly? People who become Christians are sinners who believe that God allowed his son, Jesus, to be sacrificed for the sin of mankind. Christians attempt to be worthy of God’s grace as they practice that belief, be they pirates, golfers, or like you or me.