Nova Scotia Archives

Lunenburg by the Sea

The Fisheries

Although Lunenburg has traditionally been famous for its fishing fleet, it was not always thus. Charles Morris noted, for example, in his Description and state of the new settlements in Nova Scotia (1761) that Lunenburgers "have no inclination for the Fishery tho' well situated for that purpose."

Anthony Lockwood, however, writing a half-century later in his Brief Description of Nova Scotia (1818), marked the community's transition from land to sea: "Vessels of different descriptions are now constantly plying between this settlement [Lunenburg] and Halifax, carrying to market, chord-wood [sic], lumber, hay, cattle, stock, and all kinds of vegetables." Oddly enough, the one commodity he did not mention was fish.

A decade later, Captain Moorsom noted that "Fifteen square-rigged vessels are owned in the port, besides a multitude of small craft. Their trade consists in exports of fish and some lumber to the West Indies, and a very considerable coasting traffic with Halifax and Newfoundland, in farming produce."

A century later, in 1927, Douglas Ewart Hamilton, in his book The Maritime Provinces, described a community at the height of its dialogue with the sea, noting in particular the harbour, where one could see "at anchor a hundred big schooners and more, all rigged alike and all painted black, and all shifting and dipping their bows in unison in obedience to the dictates of tide and wind and wave."

McAlpine's Gazetteer for 1919 reported that the town and county combined had 200 vessels with a total tonnage of over 20,000 tons, and that over 3000 men were employed in the Banks fisheries. The Gazetteer correctly noted that Lunenburg was "The chief fishing port or Gloucester of Canada, having the largest fishing fleet in the Dominion...." The Atlantic Gazetteer and Industrial Directory for 1939 not only echoed the earlier comment in calling Lunenburg "the chief fishing port of Canada," but also added a new and significant distinction won during the 1930s — namely that Lunenburg was the "home of the Fisherman's International Championship Racing Schooner, 'Bluenose,' Capt. Angus Walters."

Results 1 to 15 of 21 from your search:

"List of vessels anchored for examination by Health Officer at Lunenburg at the Quarantine Ground, at that place, during the year 1849."

Date: 12 February 1850

Reference: NS House of Assembly Petitons Nova Scotia Archives RG 5 P vol. 45 no. 165

Theme: The Fisheries


Lunenburg Harbour in winter

Date: ca. 1890

Reference: E.G. Owens Nova Scotia Archives 1973-88  / negative N-916

Theme: The Fisheries


View of Harbour with buildings in foreground

Date: ca. 1900

Reference: Bailly Family Nova Scotia Archives 1985-562 no. 67 / negative FP/DN1366

Theme: The Fisheries


Schooners at wharf and nets drying

Date: ca. 1900

Photographer: W.L. Bishop

Reference: W.L. Bishop Nova Scotia Archives no. 108

Theme: The Fisheries


View of fish drying on flakes

Date: ca. 1900

Photographer: W.L. Bishop

Reference: W.L. Bishop Nova Scotia Archives no. 104

Theme: The Fisheries


"Smith's Wharf, Lunenburg, N.S."

Reference: Nova Scotia Archives Photo Collection: Places: Lunenburg: Smiths Wharf

Theme: The Fisheries


Covered fish drying on flakes at the waterfront

Date: 1930-1940

Photographer: Clara Dennis

Reference: Clara Dennis Nova Scotia Archives 1983-468 no. 258

Theme: The Fisheries


Fish drying on flakes in front of house

Date: 1930-1940

Photographer: Clara Dennis

Reference: Clara Dennis Nova Scotia Archives 1983-468 no. 315

Theme: The Fisheries


Cleaning and salting fish

Photographer: W.R. MacAskill

Reference: W.R. MacAskill Nova Scotia Archives 1987-453 no. 4327

Theme: The Fisheries


Ox team, cart and dried salt cod

Date: ca. 1940

Photographer: Robert Norwood

Reference: Robert Norwood Nova Scotia Archives o. 163.1

Theme: The Fisheries


Ox team with dried salt cod

Date: ca. 1940

Photographer: Robert Norwood

Reference: Robert Norwood Nova Scotia Archives no. 163.3

Theme: The Fisheries


Schooners and dories

Photographer: W.R. MacAskill

Reference: W.R. MacAskill Nova Scotia Archives 1987-453 no. 4042

Theme: The Fisheries


Sails drying at the wharf

Photographer: W.R. MacAskill

Reference: W.R. MacAskill Nova Scotia Archives 1987-453 no. 4049

Theme: The Fisheries


Wharf scene

Date: 1942

Photographer: E.A. Bollinger

Reference: E.A. Bollinger Nova Scotia Archives no. 942-547-18

Theme: The Fisheries


Men on deck at the wharf

Date: 1942

Photographer: E.A Bollinger

Reference: E.A. Bollinger Nova Scotia Archives no. 1942-556-dd

Theme: The Fisheries


1 2

Nova Scotia Archives — https://archives.novascotia.ca/lunenburg/results/

Crown copyright © 2020, Province of Nova Scotia.