Collegeville Masks: Pirate

QUESTION:  What college is in Collegeville, PA?
A)  Eastern
B)  Ursinus
C)  Cabrini
D)  California State University, Dominguez Hills
ANSWER BELOW

We return today to the heady subject of the Collegeville Costume Company mask catalog. And, as our subject line for the blog suggests, we will be discussing the highly popular subject of pirates. These career criminals have terrorized the waters of the world for centuries, robbing and thieving and spreading fear for well over three thousand years.  And yet they have been glamorized in such films as Disney's Pirates of the Carribean, Disney's Treasure Island and Disney's Peter Pan, leaving us to wonder if the Walt Disney Company may have an unhealthy obsession with these nefarious predators of the oceans and seas of the world. Pirates are by definition bad guys. Of course, one country's pirates might be another country's heroes. For example, Spanish ships carrying treasures from the newly-discovered Americas in the early-1500's (likely stolen from the native people) would have seen the British sea captains who took their gold as pirates, while the British population celebrated them as heroes. It's all in the interpretation.

Life on the ocean has never been easy, and pirates rarely lived a long life. If they were not killed in battle, they could have easily died young due to illness or malnutrition. Many of them did live by a code of ethics - honor among thieves, as it were - and a lucky pirate was one who disappeared from the public record, because that suggests they survived the dangers of life at sea and successfully vanished in the world. But they were the exception. The "celebrated" pirates whose haunts can be visited in the United States today include the notorious Edward Teach, better known as Blackbeard, who prowled up and down the east coast.  Anne Bonney stood out as the rare pirate who may have lived to a ripe old age (but wisely disappeared and was never heard from again after she avoided a hanging due to her pregnancy). Modern historians question if tales of Captain William Kidd's terrifying deeds were not grossly exaggerated by the British government when they tried and executed him in 1701. In fact, it is now believed they funded his piracy until fear of his revealing the names of his benefactors compelled his execution.  There are countless fascinating stories of piracy dating as far back as the 14th century B.C. to as recently as just a few years ago. We encourage you to do some exploring on your own.  Or, just put on one of Collegeville's masks and jump around on the couch growling "Arrrrrrr."

ANSWER:  B)  Ursinus.  Prior to the establishment of Ursinus College, Collegeville's original name was Perkiomen Bridge, then it was changed to Freeland, and finally Collegeville in 1869.