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Thomas Paine (1632-1715) is apparently among the select few pirates who managed to live a full life as a pirate and yet die as a law-abiding citizen.
Paine was born on Martha's Vineyard in 1632, but the first mention of his pirate life is in 1678, when, as part of another pirate's fleet, he helped save many of his fellow pirates' lives whose ships were wrecked in a storm of Las Aves island--apparently, Paine's ship was a relatively small ship with a shallow draft, which allowed the ship to avoid being wrecked on the reefs surrounding Las Aves.
In 1680 and 1681, Paine was with the fleet of the Chevalier de Grammont and participated in a successful attack and sacking of a Spanish fort near Caracas, Venezuela. Paine then returned to Hispaniola for refitting. He is said to have joined other pirates in an attack on Carpenter's River, but a storm blew the fleet apart before they could carry out their attack.
In 1683, after an aborted attempt, with a coalition of other pirates, to attack and sack St. Augustine, Florida, another Spanish colony, Paine seems to have decided to leave the pirate life and settle down as a citizen. He is known to have gone to Rhode Island where he married the daughter of a judge in Jamestown. He was then asked to rid Block Island of a French pirate, Picard, and in 1698 became a freeman of Rhode Island and died there in 1715.
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