The birthdate of John Rackham is unknown, and while he never attained the notoriety of Blackbeard, he did manage to get his place in history, due to his colorful persona, Calico Jack (named so because of his preference for the Indian cloth Calico).
We first hear about Rackham in late 1718, when he was serving Charles Vane as his quartermaster. Vane had retreated from a battle on November 23rd, and the following day a portion of the crew, under the leadership of Rackham, mutinied. Rackham was elected captain and Vane and his people were set out in a sloop. Rackham started out by plundering several smaller ships around Jamaica that same day.
After several months of random rampage, Rackham became tired of the life, and wanted out. He sailed to The Bahamas in May 1719, where he was pardoned. Soon after settling down, he met Anne Bonny in a tavern and lovebirds started singing, I mean, cannons of love went off, I mean, she got pregnant (Yarr, bloody metaphors!). Her husband disagreed, and the two had to run off.
As their money started running out, Rackham put the child for caretaking at some friends in Cuba, and talked Bonny into joining him as a pirate (albeit dressed as a man). Among the crew he gathered were Mary Read, another female pirate disguised as a man (Ya, me hear that the two were dressin's men for more'n one reas'n!). Rackham and crew went back to plundering various merchants and riffraff in the area.
After a few more months of plundering, Rackham made his last major mistake. On August 20, 1720, he stole the sloop William in the harbor of Nassau, Bahamas. Governor Woodes Rogers put out a proclamation naming Rackham as the perpetrator, as well as setting out two sloops with a total of 45 men, led by Captain Jonathan Barret to get him.
After more months of chasing around (Rrar, 'takes an all-fired time sailin'round thees' seas!), Barret caught up with Rackham at Nigril Bay, Jamaica, where Rackham had been looting. Rackham set sail right away, attempting to escape (Called Vane a bleeding coward, did'e? Oughta be keelhauled!). Little did it help, as they were soon sailed up and ordered to surrender. In a last ditch attempt at preserving his dignity, Rackham had his men shoot a cannon at Barret (Aye, likey that!).
In the ensuing cannonfire, Rackham's ship was wrecked and boarded. Only the two female pirates, Bonny and Read, defended themselves as the male pirates surrendered (What be this?!).
Rackham, along with 11 of his crew, were convicted of pirateering and sentenced to hanging on November 16, 1720 in St. Jago de la Vega, Jamaica. Upon visiting Rackham in the dungeon, Bonny is to have said that she was sorry to see him there, but "if he had fought like a man, he need not be hanged like a dog" (Arrr, what a girl!).
Rackham's body was eventually placed as a reminder at Deadman's Cay (now Rackham's Cay) off Port Royal.
Sources: My big book of pirates that I read a long time ago and my dad stashed in the attic and now I can't find it and find out what the title is, Google, geocities.com/jack_calico, tinpan.fortunecity.com/lennon/897/rackam.html, sciway3.net/2001/sc-pirates/caljack.html