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The Lobster Fishery of Maine Bulletin of the United States Fish Commission, Vol. 19, Pages 241-265, 1899   By: (1868-1930)

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The Lobster Fishery of Maine, written by John N. Cobb, is a comprehensive and invaluable resource that delves into the intricate world of lobster fishing in Maine during the late 19th century. Originally published as a bulletin by the United States Fish Commission in 1899, this work provides a thorough analysis of the lobster industry, examining various aspects such as the biology of lobsters, fishing methods, and the economic impact of the industry on local communities.

Cobb's research and expertise on the subject shine through as he presents a wealth of information in a clear and accessible manner. He begins by offering a detailed account of the life cycle and behavior of lobsters, shedding light on their habitat, growth patterns, and mating rituals. This scientific background provides readers with a solid foundation to understand later sections of the book.

One of the book's highlights is its exploration of the different techniques employed by lobster fishermen. From the use of baited traps to the process of capturing and processing the lobsters, Cobb leaves no stone unturned. He describes the intricacies of trap construction, bait options, and the best locations for deploying them, offering valuable insights that were likely used by fishermen in that era.

Moreover, Cobb goes beyond the practical aspects of lobster fishing and delves into the economic and social dimensions of the industry. He takes into account the relationship between lobster catches and the local economy, examining the role of lobster fishing in supporting coastal communities and providing employment opportunities. Additionally, he highlights the challenges faced by fishermen, such as the impact of overfishing and the need for conservation measures.

Although this work was published over a century ago, much of the information provided remains relevant to this day. The Lobster Fishery of Maine gives readers a fascinating glimpse into the past, allowing them to understand the foundations of the modern lobster industry. Cobb's writing style is engaging and his attention to detail commendable, making this book an indispensible resource for anyone interested in the history of lobster fishing or the marine ecology of Maine.

One slight limitation of the book is its lack of visual aids. While Cobb's descriptions are vivid and descriptive, the inclusion of illustrations or diagrams could have enhanced the reader's understanding of the fishing techniques or lobster anatomy. However, this minor drawback does not detract significantly from the overall quality of the book.

In conclusion, The Lobster Fishery of Maine is an indispensable resource for researchers, historians, and enthusiasts interested in the lobster industry. Cobb's expertise and thorough research shine through, providing an insightful and comprehensive account of lobster fishing during the late 19th century. This book succeeds in its aim to educate and enlighten readers about the intricacies of the subject matter, leaving a lasting impression and bolstering our appreciation for the lobster fishing heritage of Maine.

First Page:



JOHN N. COBB, Agent of the United States Fish Commission.

Bulletin of the United States Fish Commission , Vol. 19, Pages 241 265, 1899

[Illustration: The sailing smack Bar Bel of Rockland]

For some years past the condition of the lobster fishery of New England has excited the earnest attention of all interested in the preservation of one of the most valuable crustaceans of our country. In the State of Maine, particularly, where the industry is of the first importance, the steady decline from year to year has caused the gravest fears, and incessant efforts have been made by the United States Fish Commission, in conjunction with the State Fish Commission of Maine, to overcome this decline. This paper presents the results of an investigation by the writer in 1899. All statistics, when not otherwise stated, are for the calendar year 1898.

I am indebted to so many dealers, fishermen, and others for information given and courtesies extended that it is impossible to mention them by name; and I now extend to all my most sincere thanks for their many kindnesses.

[Illustration: The first steam smack to carry lobsters in a well]


Although the lobster has been of great value to the New England States and the British Provinces as a food commodity, but little was known of its life history and habits until within the last few years... Continue reading book >>

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