Long John Silvers

Long John Silvers

Long John Silvers

Long John Silvers

The pub is called the Jolly Roger, and it's in a road called Jolly Road in East Haven, Connecticut. In the 1800's this was a Pirate's hideout, and people from all over came to visit their local pubs and see the old ship that is now used for storage.



Long John Silver's (formerly known as Long John Silver's Seafood Shoppes and sometimes abbreviated as LJS) is an American chain of fast-food restaurants that specializes in seafood. The brand's name is derived from the novel Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson, in which the pirate Long John Silver is one of the main characters.

Robert Newton became the definitive Long John Silver in Disney's 1950 live-action film. Born in Dorset in the South West of England, Newton had a broad 'West Country' accent & when this was encouraged & exaggerated by the writers, it became the archetypal 'Pirate voice'.! The phrases "Arrrrrh, matey!" & "Ha, haaar, Jim lad" have become iconic to the way historic pirates are perceived. (Source: en.wikipedia.org)


Luke Arnold played John Silver in the Starz television series Black Sails (2014–2017), a prequel story set 20 years before Treasure Island. In this series, Silver as a young man begins as a scheming cook who rises to serve as quartermaster on the Walrus and on a captured Spanish Man O' War, later to lead the pirate and former-slave forces that attempt to re-take Nassau from the British. Reflecting his relationship with Jim Hawkins, Silver intends only to use his crewmates to enrich himself, but comes to care for them despite himself. At one point, a rival pirate crew captures the Man O' War but, being too few to sail the ship themselves, ask Silver for a list of crew members who can be counted on to shift their loyalties, intending to execute the rest. Silver refuses, and the pirates torture him by repeatedly striking his leg with an axe. The Walrus' crew free themselves and rescue him, but his leg is beyond saving and has to be amputated. He loses consciousness, and wakes to find that a grateful and impressed crew has voted him quartermaster.

Shortly after taking Jerrico public in 1969, Rosenthal launched Long John Silver’s Fish & Chips, a name inspired by Robert Louis Stevenson’s novel Treasure Island. Located on Southland Drive in Lexington, the first restaurant was a success; LJS developed into a chain and soon became Jerrico’s most successful endeavor. By the end of 1971, there were more than 200 LJS units in operation. (Source: www.encyclopedia.com)


For readers of Robert Louis Stevenson's day, Long John Silver's mixed-race marriage would have been a part of that mystery. He is married to an African woman at a time when mixed-race marriages were not common or even considered acceptable. So he lives both inside and outside the law. He owns property (inside the law), but is still a pirate (definitely outside the law). And he is married (inside the law), but to a woman of a different race (socially unacceptable in the 19th century). He breaks rules and challenges the simplistic binaries of good guy/bad guy in multiple ways, which makes him all the more alluring.

The character of Long John Silver is based on a real-life buddy of Robert Louis Stevenson's (sadly, not a real-life pirate): William Ernest Henley. Like Stevenson, Henley was a writer of renown. Also like Stevenson, Henley spent much of his life sick with tuberculosis. He even had to have his leg amputated (hence Long John Silver's peg-leg). But Henley never let his illness stop him from participating actively in the literary scene of 19th-century Britain. His stubbornness, courage, and intimidation of lesser minds around him made him a compelling figure, and an excellent model for gentleman pirate Long John Silver. (Read more about Henley here.) (Source: www.shmoop.com)



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