Bulletin of the United States Fish Commission 1881.

Notes on the Fisheries of Gloucester, Massachusetts.
By S.J. Martin. [Letter to Prof S. F. Baird]

The George's vessels have not done much the last week. They have to go to Grand Manan after bait; that makes the trips longer. Three halibut fares have been landed this week; small fares. Halibut bring a high price, selling during the past week at 9 cents a pound for white and 6 cents a pound for gray. The outlook for fresh fish is good: Haddock have not been sold for less than two and one half cents a pound. Cod have been sold for 3 cents per pound all the week. There is a good school of cod in Ipswich Bay--large fish. Schooner Rising Star caught 20,000 pounds in three days. The rest of the boats did as well.

One of the Rockport boats set 12 nets, where they were getting 6,000 pounds on trawls in one day. When they hauled the nets they took 200 pounds. They cannot get trawl fish in nets, or net fish on trawls. That has been well tried. The Southern mackerel fleet have not done much.

The schooner Mertio Delmar was in New York Monday; she had 130 barrels of medium-sized mackerel caught thirty miles southeast from Cape Henry. Last year the first mackerel were caught on the 23d day of March. The next, April 19, when 12 sail arrived with 1,705 barrels. The next were caught April 25, when 30 sail arrived in New York with 6,000 barrels of fresh mackerel. The mackerel sold in New York Tuesday at 12 and 10 cents each. All the old mackerel are out of the market. The first salt mackerel will bring a good price.

I hope the mackerel-catchers learned a lesson last summer about selling their mackerel out of pickle to save inspection. They began to sell mackerel out of pickle five years ago. The last three summers it has been carried on extensively. Mackerel sold out of pickle last year for $4 per barrel were sold afterwards for $l0 per barrel. I do not see where the general inspector gets his pay when the mackerel are sold out of pickle; that


Bulletin of the United States Fish Commission 1881.
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is, if he gets so much for inspection on a barrel. Perhaps the law is altered; if not, there is a great deal of hush money. When mackerel are sold out of pickle it hurts the market. When the speculator gets them they are all culled over; number one's made of number two's and number two's made of number three's; and they make twelve twenty-pound kits out of a barrel. If a man buys inspected mackerel, he gets what belongs to him. If they are not inspected, he does not; so much for that.

The boat that arrived from Ipswich Bay this morning was the Annie Hodgdon, with 15,000 pounds of nice cod, from two days fishing with trawls. A school of haddock have been on the coast the past three days. One man in a dory yesterday caught 500 pounds half a mile southeast from Eastern Point. If there is plenty of bait the small vessels will do well. Prospects good for all kinds of fish.
GLOUCESTER, MASS:, April 16, 1882.

[No. 2.-Letter to Prof. S.. F. Baird. ]
I thought I would write a few lines about the last week's fishing in Gloucester. There have been twelve vessels from Western Bank with 780,000 pounds salt fish; 30 vessels frorii George's, averaging 15,000 pounds to a vessel; ten vessels with 210,000 pounds-haddock; two vessels with 50,000 pounds of fresh halibut. The haddock have all been sold to the splitters. There is no market for haddock and cod. There are plenty of mackerel and shad in New York. There have been fifteen vessels in New York with 1,600 barrels of mackerel.

Shad are sent on from New York in large quantities to Boston market. That hurts the sale of cod and haddock. There has been a good school of large cod in Ipswich Bay. The shore boats do well when they have plenty of bait. Herring are more plentiful than they have been. Herring are half grown.

The men in the harbor with nets sell all they can get at 50 cents a bucket. Haddock are more plentiful this year in the month of April than they have been for eight years. On a fine day the dories get from three to four hundred pounds half a mile from the Point.

There were three Lynn boats here yesterday; they had 20,000 pounds of haddock to a boat, caught on Middle Bank in two days' fishing. That has not been done during the past five years. The first salt mackerel were sold in New York for $8 a barrel. Fish of all kinds are a shade lower. Dried George's cod sold at 51 cents a pound. Fresh halibut have sold all the week at 11 cents a pound. Fresh cod 1j cents a pound:

Fresh haddock l cent a pound. Mackerel sold in New York, Saturday, at 4 cents a piece. Shad sold in Boston, Saturday, at 10 cents a piece. Whales are plentiful out in the bay, sometimes coming close to the shore; a number have been shot over at Provincetown. The George's vessels report plenty of herring on George's.
GLOUCESTER, Mass., April 23, 1882.


Bulletin of the United States Fish Commission 1881.
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[No. 3. Letter to Prof. S. F. Baird.]
There have been thirty arrivals. from George's with light fares, averaging 12,000 pounds to a vessel; twelve sail from Western Bank with good fares, averaging 60,000 to a vessel; six sail from the banks with fresh halibut, averaging 30,000 pounds to a vessel; 120,000 pounds of haddock have been landed this week. Haddock remain plenty inshore.

Vessels carrying their fish fresh to market do not go farther than Middle Bank. They get 10,000, 12,000, and 15,000 a day. The dories, with one man, go one mile from the mouth of the harbor and bring home from 400 to 600 pounds at 2 p.m. This has not been done for the last ten years. In the month of May there is a small school of haddock comes in-shore and stays about a week. This has been the case for the last four years. The herring are more plentiful in-shore than they have been during the past fifteen years--1 mean spring herring. Eighty barrels were in a trap at Kettle Island on Friday night and 60 barrels last night.

Schooner Phantom came in this morning with 60 barrels caught with a seine four miles from the mouth of the harbor. The herring caught outside are large-as large as the spawn-herring caught in the fall; those caught in the harbor are half-size. They sell as fast as they are received. The western bankers take 40 barrels. No bait to be had on the Nova Scotia shore. The vessels carry their bait from Gloucester. Herring sold this morning $2 per barrel. All kinds of fish come nearer the shore this spring. Mackerel are close to the shore. They have been caught eight miles from the Delaware breakwater.

The price of fish, with the exception of mackerel, rule the same as last week. Salt mackerel were sold Friday in Philadelphia for $6 per barrel. The first sold for $8 per barrel.
GLOUCESTER, MASS., April 30, 1882.