The character of Blackbeard has appeared in over 300 films from Pirates of the Caribbean: Search for the Fountain of Youth to Blackbeard’s Ghost. None of these have really done justice to the actual man from history. Blackbeard was not only a pirate, he was a conniving and manipulative man, who was pardoned, but became a pirate again, and died in a fight that left him shot 5 times and cut 20 times. He once betrayed his own men, by marooning 25 of them!
Edward Teach (sometimes called Edward Thatch) reached fame as Blackbeard. He was a large and imposing man, who went into battle carrying 8 flintlock pistols, in addition to his sword, and tied lit fuses under his hat to scare his enemies. He operated around the West Indies and the eastern coast of the American Colonies Although little is known about his early life, he was probably born in Bristol, England. He may havebeen a sailor on privateer ships during Queen Anne’s Wart before settling on the Bahamian island of New Providence, a base for a pirate named, Benjamin Hornigold, whose crew Teach joined sometime around 1716. Hornigold placed him in command of a sloop he had captured, and the two engaged in numerous acts of piracy. Their numbers were boosted by the addition to their fleet of two more ships, one of which was commanded by Stede Bonnett, but toward the end of 1717 Hornigold retired from piracy, taking two vessels with him.
Teach captured a French merchant vessel, renamed her Queen Anne’s Revenge, and equipped her with 40 guns. He became a renowned pirate, his nickname derived from his thick black beard and fearsome appearance. He formed an alliance of pirates and blockaded the port of Charleston, South Carolina, After successfully ransoming its inhabitants, he ran Queen Anne’s Revenge aground on a sandbar near Beaufort, North Carolina. He parted company with Bonnet, settling in Bath Town, where he accepted a royal pardon. But he was soon back at sea and attracted the attention of the Governer of Virgina, Alexander Spotswood. Spotswood arranged for a party of soldiers and sailors to try to capture the pirate, which they did on 22 November 1718. During a ferocious battle, Teach and several of his crew were killed by a small force of sailors led by Lieutenant Robert Maynard.
A more complete history of the most famous pirate can be found at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blackbeard