Dyer, Michael: The Life of Whalers in the 19th Century

Posted on October 4th, 2016 in American History,Animals by LeGov

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Whaling in New Bedford, Massachusetts, the home of Herman Melville, author of “Moby Dick,” is our topic today. Our guest is Michael Dyer, the senior historian at the New Bedford Whaling Museum. The Whaling Museum reveals the lives of the largest mammals on earth. The museum’s social history collection shares the monumental stories of those who spent their human lives whaling at sea between the New England coast and half way around the world, as well as their families who yearned for their return. It explains how the seamen lived at sea, who they were, as well as the captains and owners of the sailing vessels and all those in between. It also explains the economics of the whale oil that lit and lubricated the industrial revolution.

In part one of our series on whaling I met with Mike Dyer at the New Bedford Whaling Museum on September 2, 2016. To put matters it into perspective, we began with I asked him to describe the Sperm whale.

In this program, part two of our visit with Mike Dyer, we began when he described the lives of the men who went to sea to hunt the whales.

The book Mike Dyer recommends is Marine Mammals of the Northwestern Coast of North America, by Charles Melville Scammon.

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