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Cape Cod They Used Big Anchors

The pictures one sees which show the bow of some old sailing ship with her anchor catted (“hung up” on the out-side of her bow) invariably fail to give a true impression of the tremendous size and weight of both anchor and anchor chain.

An incident in the Summer of 1953 off Provincetown will, however, help to correct any impression that a ship’s anchor was a small thing. One day that summer the dragger “Jimmy Boy” had its gear foul in a huge anchor deep in the water off the Back Shore.

When the skipper tried to tow the anchor and its great length of chain, he found that he would have to have the aid of two other draggers, the “Plymouth Belle” and the “Joan and Thomas.” All three combining their strength, they managed to bring the mass of iron round to the wharf at Lands End. One fisherman estimated that the total weight of chain and anchor would be about three tons!

When I was still commercial fishing back in 1999, the “Plymouth Belle” and the “Joan and Tom” were still fishing every day. I haven’t been to Ptown in a few years, but those two boats are probably still there.

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Cape Cod
Posted by Cape Cod - (website) on 01/27/06
Categories: FishingHistoryProvincetown
Keywords: fishing, maritime, history, provincetown


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