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After the Basques

Researchers co-publish book on whaling stations of N.L.

Research | Books at Memorial

From about 1530 to the early 1600s, Basque whalers from France and Spain annually visited Labrador to hunt right and bowhead whales.

Their station at Red Bay, the whaling capital of the time, was proclaimed a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2013.

Comprehensive account

Following small-scale traditional hunts by American and local crews, modern whaling arrived in Newfoundland and Labrador in 1898 with the establishment of a processing plant at Snook’s Arm, Notre Dame Bay, and ended at South Dildo and Williamsport in 1972 when the government of Canada placed a moratorium on the non-Indigenous hunt.

During that period, 27 companies supported by some 60 vessels sporadically operated from 21 stations to catch almost 20,000 whales in local waters.

After the Basques: The Whaling Stations of Newfoundland and Labrador offers readers a comprehensive account of the stations, vessels, companies and personnel involved.

Dr. Anthony Dickinson, Honorary Research Professor of biology, and Dr. Chesley Sanger, professor emeritus of geography, have put together a well-illustrated, very readable and highly informative book which is a must for anyone interested in the history of Newfoundland and Labrador.

After the Basques: The Whaling Stations of Newfoundland and Labrador is published by DRC Publishing.

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