Tag Archives: Cape Cod schooners

On This Day – September 28, 1889: Cape fishermen heading for South Africa for mackerel

A century ago the fishermen on Cape Cod were making plans to spend the winter fishing for mackerel off the Cape of Good Hope off the southern tip of Africa, a distance of almost 8,000 miles away from homeport. For the wives of the Cape’s fishermen that would mean nearly year-round widowhood as the trip a century ago took weeks under the best of conditions and mackerel were believed to abound in South African waters after December 1st, the same fish seen here six months later. The Cape Cod schooners will salt the mackerel and return to Provincetown to sell their catch. The reprint of the story in The New York Times from a century ago is below. click here to read the story 08:18

Wondering about the success of this venture? click here to read a bit more about it! pg. 196