Roberto Cofresí
Pirate of the Caribbean


La Guarida Del PirataTowards the end of the 18th century and the beginning of the 19th century, Puerto was still a colony dominated by Spain. Due to its geographic location, Puerto Rico was a very important military strategic area for navigating from the New World to the Old World. It served as a base for protection against the enemy and a place to stock-up on food, and water.

During these times ships full of gold and jewels regularly sailed the Caribbean. Since Spanish law did not permit commerce with many of the other islands in the area, smuggling and contraband were an everyday economical activity. Fighting, robbing, warring and piracy on the high seas seemed to be the order of those days.

History and legends tell us about the many heroes and villains of the time. One of the great pirates of those times, who defended the poor, was a man named Roberto Cofresí Ramirez de Arellano. Born in the coastal town of Cabo Rojo, as an adolescent he set out to change Spain’s political policies towards his island of "BORINQUEN". Him and his crew of 15 Puerto Rican men, aboard the Schooner Ana, were soon to write a page in the history of the Caribbean.

At a time were supplies and provisions were scarce for the common people. Roberto Cofresí was known to have fiercely attacked foreign ships that sailed the Atlantic and the Caribbean. The booty was always shared with his friends and the poor. In 1824 Cofresí and his crew attacked 8 ships one of them an American Ship. Captain John Sloat of the US Naval Forces, in command of the Schooner Grampus was sent to pursue Cofresí. After a fierce battle Cofresí and his crew were captured. All 16 were sent to El Morro Castle and judged by the Spanish Council of War. Their death sentence took place on the morning of March 29, 1825 on the fields of El Morro Castle in Old San Juan.