WHHM Conversation: Woods Hole Whaling, by Dr. Jim Hain

A Woods Hole Historical Museum Conversation about Whaling in Woods Hole
November 13th, 12:30 PM, Woods Hole Public Library

Candle House in Woods Hole in the early 1900s. Robert C. Hunt Jr. postcard collection, Falmouth Public Library.

The stone Candle House on Water Street, which now houses administrative offices for the Marine Biological Laboratory, is a reminder of a time 175 years ago when Woods Hole was home port for a number of whaling ships.  In “Woods Hole Whaling:  A National and Global Enterprise from a Small Village,” Dr. Jim Hain will present the history of whaling in Woods Hole.

 Today, ships and researchers from the village sail the oceans seeking knowledge directed to the conservation of whales.  In a past time, the ships and people sailed widely to harvest the whales.  As with Texas and Louisiana today, the raw materials then were brought to a refinery or manufactory―in this case, the Candle House in Woods Hole,  used for storing whale oil and manufacturing spermaceti candles.

 Dr. Hain has assembled details from logbooks, account books, narratives, photographs, videos, cemeteries, and the work of other authors to paint glimpses of Woods Hole, whaling voyages, and the whaling related products manufactured and sold from the village.

 Dr. Hain has worked at the Marine Biological Laboratory, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Sea Education Association, and is currently affiliated with Associated Scientists at Woods Hole.  He has done research from Newfoundland to Brazil.  One of his current projects is studying and monitoring right whales and their calving in coastal waters of northeast Florida, where he works from December through April. 

 The conversation will be held at Woods Hole Public Library lower level meeting room and is free and open to the public.

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