Whaling Ships – A Few Historical Details

It’s time to talk about the actual whale ships. But don’t confuse them with the whaleboats – there is a difference. Whaleboats were the smaller vessels used in the actual hunt; they were about 28-30 feet in length and not designed for a long voyage and equipped with oars, steering oar, and long lengths of rope which would be connected to the harpoon.

Today, we’ll focus on the big ship. The one that left harbor, sailed around the world, carried the smaller whaleboats, housed the crew, provided a platform for the boiling pots, and stored the barrels and bundles of profit. How big were these ships? What was the layout of the decks? How much could a ship stand from weather and other forces of nature? Let’s explore…

(For those of you who might be wondering about a new post on Thursday… Since we skipped a maritime post on Wednesday last week, you’ll get two this week to keep the series on schedule.) Continue reading

The Earliest American Whaling

The earliest American whaling on the east coast. Let’s be sure to clarify the location!

This month Gazette665’s Wednesday blog posts will continue to explore whaling in 19th Century maritime, and we’ll be tracing some of the developments and communities surrounding the industry. To start understanding the complex picture, today we’ll journey back to the foundations of American whaling – back to the 1600 and 1700’s and delve into the early attempts which laid the ground work for the late 18th and early 19th Century’s activities. Continue reading