Gloucester HarborWalk | 09 Packing Fish
2035
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09 Packing Fish
09 Packing Fish
© Cape Ann Museum, Gloucester MA
There wasn’t a chair in the place….If we were lucky there’d be fish, but if we were waiting for a boat sometimes you’d have to wait all morning long. Course this time of the year it would be desperate because those big doors would be open down stairs and all the breeze would be coming in from the wharves. You had to stand around and wait. You didn’t dare leave because it meant a dollar if you stayed. This was your livelihood. And the top pay that you could make was 33½ cents an hour at that time. And if they wanted you to work seven days a week you worked seven days a week.”

Marjorie Stout When Gloucester was Gloucester: Toward an Oral History of the City, Gloucester 350th Anniversary Celebration Inc. Stout’s later work included directing Action Inc., a social service agency, for over a decade.

“If you look out on the grey green water and you still see the rusting hulls of working fishing boats, this is still Gloucester.” Mark Kurlansky, author submitted quote for the HarborWalk

 Excerpt from A WAGE PAYMENT PLAN FOR THE GORTON-PEW FISHERIES COMPANY, 1947

The present wage payment plan consists of paying the girls on an hourly basis which is at the rate of 70 cent an hour. For this 70 cents, management has only been able to obtain an average of 25 boxes per hour from the girls. This average of 25 boxes was obtained from Gorton’s records which cover a period of five years.

Packing Fish

Prize winning photojournalist, Charles A. Lowe; photos courtesy Gloucester Daily Times and Cape Ann Museum

iGetNewEngland Features Cape Pond Ice (7:11min)

iGetNewEngland Host Greg Boghosian visits the Cape Pond Ice Company in Gloucester, Massachusetts.