So this week my team was at Charlestown Navy Yard and the topic for the weeks blog is on fisheries. while the Navy Yard doesn't have much history with fisheries, it has a very rich shipbuilding history. One type of ship that was built here was called a Schooner. One Schooner built in Charlestown is called the Roseway and it is docked over by the Moakley Courthouse. It was originally built to be a Cod Schooner but the man who owned it didn't like the smell of Cod so he decided to use the vessel to fish for Swordfish instead. In New England a lot of Schooners were used to fish for Cod. Cod is a bottom feeding fish that used to be extremely plentiful in the waters off shore. Because of their abundance, the Cod fishing industry began to explode, thus creating large Cod fisheries. The demand for Cod increased and people began over fishing Cod. Meaning that fishermen were taking more Cod than the population could support. However, regulations have been put in place to prevent people from over fishing.
This week my team also got to go out on the Belle for a harbor tour. We crisscrossed all over the inner harbor learning about how the coastline has expanded and changed since the 1600's. We then went out near some of the harbor islands. An interesting thing I learned about the islands is that at low tide there are 34 islands but at high tide there are only 33. That is because at high tide water completely covers one island. This island is called Nixes Mate. Back in the old days, this is where people would hang pirates as a deterrent for other pirates entering the harbor. Legend has it that the last pirate to be hung on the island cast a curse upon it. He cast that the island would sink back into the sea and 20 years later at high tide it went completely under.