The first clear reference to Davy Jones comes from a book titled The Adventures of Peregine Pickle written by one Tobias Smollet in 1751
. It states "This same Davy Jones, according to the mythology
of sailors, is the fiend
that presides over all the evil spirits of the deep, and is often seen in various shapes, perching among the rigging on the eve of hurricane
s, ship-wrecks, and other disasters to which sea-faring life is exposed, warning the devoted wretch
of death and woe".
Now on to the legend of Davy Jones locker...
There's a couple of stories that usually attempt to identify the "real" Davy Jones and his locker. The first is that there was a pub owner in London that went by the same name. As the story goes, his specialty was to drug unwary patrons and store them in his ale lockers at the back of the pub until they could be taken aboard some ship. Another version is that Davy Jones was a pirate that liked to make his captives walk the plank, ending up at the bottom of the sea.
Was there a real Davy Jones? Who knows, the stories surrounding his existence seem to based more on folklore than fact.