Crew of the HMS Providence
General information

King George II
Hector Barbossa


Hector Barbossa

Notable members

Theodore Groves
Joshamee Gibbs
About 646 more men[1]


HMS Providence


London, England

Other information

King George II
British Royal Navy

Behind the scenes
First appearance

On Stranger Tides

Last appearance

On Stranger Tides


All crewmen killed or deserted.[2]

"Are we not King's men?"
Hector Barbossa to the crew[src]

The crew of the HMS Providence was a British Royal Navy crew. Led by Hector Barbossa, a former pirate who served as a privateer in King George II's court, this was the best-drilled crew to provide the most formidable task force assembled for His Majesty. Under Barbossa's command, the HMS Providence's crew sails forth without fear. The crew participated in the quest for the Fountain of Youth, which ended with almost all the crewmen either killed or deserted, with Barbossa himself returning to piracy.

History[edit | edit source]

Early voyages[edit | edit source]

It is unknown when this crew was recruited, but these men would serve the British Royal Navy aboard the HMS Providence, the pride of King George II's fleet.[3] As the Providence's usual job was to patrol the seas, the crew searched for pirates to eradicate.[4] This crew was most notably under the command of Hector Barbossa, an ex-pirate who had received a Royal Pardon and became a privateer in the King's court. After that, the Providence was ruled with an iron fist, with no rum, no smoking, and no uncouth songs.[3]

Quest for the Fountain of Youth[edit | edit source]

Race to the Fountain[edit | edit source]

"The Fountain is the prize. It appears we be not even worth the time it take to sink us. Now, we've fallen behind! All hands! Make more sail!"
"All hands! More sail!"
"Ride hard between wind and tide!
Hector Barbossa and Theodore Groves[src]

Hector Barbossa looking at three Spanish galleons.

Upon receiving the report that King Ferdinand of Spain knew the location of the Fountain of Youth, King George II needed to send a crew to find the Fountain for him. Originally, King George was going to send Jack Sparrow, a pirate rumored to have known the way to the Fountain, and was recruiting a crew to undertake a voyage. But after the cunning pirate escaped from St. James's Palace, King George sent the HMS Providence to find the Fountain under privateer Hector Barbossa's command. Barbossa was given the crew to serve on the Providence, including his two main officers Lieutenant Commander Theodore Groves and Lieutenant Gillette, bewigged and resplendent in their new uniforms. The finest officers of the Admiralty produced this team with the best crew to assemble for His Majesty.[5] As he knew the route to the Fountain of Youth, having memorized the map owned by his ally Jack Sparrow, Joshamee Gibbs was forced to come aboard the Providence as well, serving as the navigator during the voyage.[2]

Barbossa and his officers after dealing with the Spanish galleons.

The next day, the crew of the HMS Providence sailed through the Atlantic Ocean. As the journey progressed, Barbossa needed a heading from Gibbs so he sent Groves to bring him to the helm. After being brought before Barbossa, Gibbs looked through the ship's charts. Gibbs was sure they were on the right course, as he saw three galleons of The Spaniard's crew sailing on the horizon. Barbossa, with the help of Groves and Gillette, immediately ordered the crew of the Providence to get into their battle stations. With the crew ready for battle, Groves asked Barbossa for orders as the ships came closer. Though the Providence crew was prepared for battle, with their cannons readied, the Spanish galleons simply passed by the Providence without fire. Barbossa deduced that their mission to find the Fountain was why the Spanish didn't attack, and that they weren't worth the time to attack. Knowing that they've fallen behind in the race to the Fountain, Barbossa, now more determined to reach their destination, ordered the crew to make more sail.[2]

Barbossa informing his crew of their destination.

Whitecap Bay[edit | edit source]

"That's the way of it, then?"
"No disrespect, sir."
"What do the men fear? Say it. Speak the words."
"Whitecap Bay.
Hector Barbossa and Theodore Groves[src]

At some point in the Providence's voyage, the crew became wary of their destination, talking amongst themselves in their fear. This prompted Lieutenant Commander Groves into confront Captain Barbossa about the situation. After enjoying a plate-full of sliced apples, the privateer revealed their immediate course—Whitecap Bay, home to mermaids. Upon hearing this revelation, the crew were immediately stroked with fear.[2] Although Groves attempted to calm the crewmen down, one of the men raced for the railing and jumped overboard, swimming toward a faraway island.[6] However, Barbossa managed to inspire confidence into the men by asking if they were King's men. And so with the crew at his side, Barbossa ordered the Providence to set full sail for Whitecap Bay.[2]

Attack on the Providence[edit | edit source]
"Sir. The men—"
"They be dead already."
"They don't sound dead."
"Oh, is that so? Well I hear nothing but...seagulls. Nesting.
Theodore Groves and Hector Barbossa[src]

The Providence crew at Whitecap Bay.

Soon the HMS Providence arrived to Whitecap Bay. As a storm erupted, Barbossa brought a team ashore, consisting of a handful of men, including his officers, Groves and Gillette, and his navigator, Gibbs. While ashore, Barbossa's men looked upon the aftermath of a mermaid attack from the previous night, in which they found remains of deceased mermaids. It was then that Gibbs urged Barbossa to give up this quest, but Barbossa refused. As Groves warned Barbossa that they must hasten, the crew immediately heard shrieks and screams as the rest aboard the Providence was under attack by living mermaids. It was then that Barbossa ordered to continue on. Groves initially refused to abandon the crewmen, but changed his mind after Barbossa pulled a pistol on him, as he believed that there was nothing more they could do. Barbossa then used his pistol to force Gibbs to give another heading.[2]

As the remaining crew aboard the Providence soon fell to its attackers, sinking beneath the waters, Gillette ordered the crewmen of Barbossa's landing party to push on. With the Providence ultimately destroyed, the crew was without a ship. Nonetheless, Gibbs was able to lead the crew to their next heading, thereby continuing their journey through dense jungle.[2]

Barbossa and his crew going through jungles.

Through the Jungle[edit | edit source]

"What are you stoppin' for, eh? Push on!"
"Push on!"
"You can sleep when you're dead! Push on!
Hector Barbossa and Theodore Groves[src]

The crew continued their quest for the Fountain of Youth through dark jungles. Walking through the jungle, Barbossa and Gibbs complained about it being nice to have a map or a ship. Barbossa immediately ordered everyone in the crew to stop as he carefully grabbed a little, but deadly dart frog from Gibbs' shoulder. He then puts it in a jar, held by Groves, adding it with more frogs that he recently started collecting. As a bewildered Gibbs stared at Barbossa's unique collection, Barbossa ordered his crew to push on. Glaring at his collection of frogs, Barbossa said to himself that fortune continued to favor him. Barbossa soon abandoned the crew to find Ponce de León's ship, the Santiago.[2]

Later, after Barbossa climbed aboard the Santiago, the Providence crew went to meet with their captain, who joined forces with pirate Jack Sparrow. The rest of the Barbossa's crew continued on toward the Spanish camp, made in front of Fort San Miguel by The Spaniard's crew, in an attempt to steal the Chalices of Cartagena.[2]

Retrieving the Chalices[edit | edit source]

"Go! Prepare to move out!"
"The enemy is soon upon us! I'm sorry about the Chalices, Jack, but I've an appointment to keep. I'll not be going back."
"No need. Shall we have a drink?
Theodore Groves, Hector Barbossa and Jack Sparrow[src]

Jack Sparrow successfully retrieved the Chalices for Barbossa's crew.

After journeying through the bamboo grove, Barbossa's crew had gotten very close to the Spanish camp. By Barbossa's orders to Groves, the crew had to stay behind and wait for the signal while Barbossa and Jack continued on to infiltrate the enemy camp. Although Barbossa and Jack were both captured, stripped of their possessions, and tied around palm trees, Jack managed to escape by his own means. While Jack distracted the Spanish soldiers, Groves freed Barbossa, taking Jack's escape as the signal. In the end, they managed to accomplish their goal, as Jack was able to successfully take the Chalices. While Jack rejoined Blackbeard and his pirate crew, Barbossa and the rest of his crew followed from a distance.[2]

Battle at the Fountain[edit | edit source]

"This land is hereby forever claimed in the glorious name of His Majesty, King George—"
"...Someone make a note of that man's bravery.
Theodore Groves and The Spaniard[src]

Barbossa's crew arrives to the Fountain of Youth.

When Blackbeard's pirate crew found the Fountain of Youth, Barbossa made a surprising entrance, with his crew backing him up, revealing that Jack Sparrow led them to Blackbeard. Pulling out his sword, Barbossa proclaimed Blackbeard as his prisoner. But as he didn't want to go down without a fight, Blackbeard ordered his crew, consisting of humans and zombies, to fight Barbossa's crew. After a brief interruption from Jack Sparrow, who questioned the crews fighting each other when the quarrel was only between Barbossa and Blackbeard, the battle between the two crews inevitably ensued with the two captains engaged in a duel. Barbossa's crew fought valiantly against the pirates, but many of the men were soon killed.

Barbossa's crew confronts Blackbeard's crew.

Even Gillette, who got in the way of Barbossa's duel and was stabbed by Blackbeard's sword. Barbossa pushed Gillette's dead body aside and continued his fight with Blackbeard. The Quartermaster killed one of Barbossa's men. Though he was a prisoner of Blackbeard's crew, Philip was suddenly run through the stomach by one of Barbossa's crewmen. Some British sailors and soldiers were kept at bay, particularly those who fought Blackbeard's notable crewmen, like Angelica and Scrum. In their duel, Barbossa was tripped by Blackbeard, who was about to finish Barbossa off, until more unwanted visitors arrived. From out of the fog, The Spaniard appeared, backed by soldiers carrying tall banners of the Spanish Monarchy.

Groves proclaiming the Fountain.

The Spanish march towards the Fountain with a large force, outnumbering both the British and the pirates. The fighting ceased as more armed Spanish soldiers surrounded the two crews. At that moment, after seeing the Spanish flags, Groves ran toward the Fountain and unfurled the Union Jack, holding it in his hands as he proclaimed the Fountain as the property of King George. But Groves was immediately shot by the Spaniard, instantly killing him, who then asked one of his men to make a note about Groves' bravery. After forcibly taking the Chalices from Angelica, the Spaniard stated that only God could grant eternal life and then dropped the Chalices and stomped on them. And so it was revealed that the Spanish's true intention was to destroy the Fountain, not to use it for gaining immortality for their King. The Spaniard then tossed the Chalices into a deep pool before ordering his men to destroy the temple surrounding the Fountain.

As the Spanish began destroying the Fountain, both Groves' and Gillette's bodies were carried away and Barbossa successfully wounded Blackbeard fatally. Barbossa took Blackbeard's sword and proclaimed it, his ship and crew as his own. And so Barbossa left the Fountain followed by Blackbeard's human crew. The rest of the survivors retreated by the time the Fountain was finally destroyed.

Everyday life[edit | edit source]

The crew of the HMS Providence was known to be the best-drilled crew that the finest officers of the Admiralty could produce. Sailors and officers work well together in various voyages, providing the most formidable task force His Majesty King George II could assemble. Under the command of privateer Hector Barbossa, the Providence crew sails forth on its quest without fear, though it is possible that the crew would feel differently if they knew of some of the previous disasters its captain had took part in. The crew could take any action, except firing upon other nations in which Great Britain was not at war with. They could only hope the crews of the three Spanish galleons they meet during the quest for the Fountain of Youth feel the same.[5]

Bewigged and resplendent in their new uniforms, Barbossa's naval officers Theodore Groves and Gillette were always ready to give him expert advice, though he ignores it. Of all the Providence crewmen, the ex-pirate knew that Joshamee Gibbs was the only one who truly understood the outlandish perils ahead, such as mermaids.[5]

Behind the scenes[edit | edit source]

The Pirates of the Caribbean wiki has a collection of images and media related to Crew of the HMS Providence.

Appearances[edit | edit source]

Sources[edit | edit source]

Notes and references[edit | edit source]

vdeCrew of the HMS Providence
Captain: Hector Barbossa
HMS Providence
Lieutenant Commander Theodore GrovesLieutenant GilletteJoshamee GibbsProvidence Sailor
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