Safety First

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Flashback To The Old Whaling Days In Speightstown

One of the jetties in Speightstown also used for landing whales as it appeared about a hundred years ago.

"They used to bring the whales in to the jetty and cut them up. The sharks were all around. The sharks came in to get the, what they call the blubber. Charles has the things to cut the blubber, to draw knives in. They said the people and sharks used to swim together. The sharks never attacked them or anything. People there used to say that the sharks ate the blubber and that etched their teeth out, and that way they won’t bite the people. They have their stories in all these things. But I started to tell you about the windmills, and they used to boil the sugar, the cane juice, in different stages. They would boil it in one long, big…and then they would shift it from one to the other. They used to call that crack liquor, and you could sit miles around and smell that. It had a beautiful smell. And they said that that is what used to attract the whales to Barbados. That’s why they all came along the west coast here. They say when they stopped working, the whales stopped coming. They didn’t get the smell, you know. It could be just a farce, you know, but that is what they said…My uncle had a lot of the harpoons, and he gave them all away to the fishermen. They used to go and harpoon the porpoises and everything. They didn’t know what to do with them, you know. Let me see if I can remember anything else. The whales are what they call the humpback whale..."

Read more: Barbados TravelAdvisor • View topic - Diving with the whales

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