Gloucester — The Cape Ann Fleet

Fleet boats at the dock.

From the earliest settlement days in New England, Gloucester has been nearly synonymous with “fishing fleet.”

The shoals extend far out to sea. These are dangerous waters.

Storms along these shores are infamous and no less dangerous now than in centuries past.

To be a Gloucesterman was to be revered as among the bravest of the doughty New England fisherman to put out to sea.

Still a busy port in the new millennium.

Whaling was one of the most important original industries through coastal New England and along with it, all other kinds of fish. The didn’t name Cape Cod after raccoon or deer.

There are two lighthouses nearby, neither visible. One is to the left and the other nearly straight ahead but hidden by a mist which always seems to hang over the water on even the clearest day.

Soon, out to sea.

While we stayed in Rockport, we visited Gloucester, which is “next door” and just down the road. Some pictures from the visit … summertime along a rocky New England shore.

There are many legends and stories associated with this shoreline, some true, some tall tales, some where the truth is impossible to know.

Walking on these rocks can be treacherous too. The ocean can quite unexpectedly come up over the rocks, making them slippery as ice.

Rumor says that “shore pirates” would wave lanterns on this shoreline to lure ships onto the rocks so that the marauders could steal the cargo. Such stories are so widespread that there is probably truth in at least some of them, but no one is left alive to tell the true tale.

Nearby Rockport, very early in the morning.

Categories: Ecology, History, Nature, Photography, Seasons

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

8 replies

  1. How beautiful! My maternal grandmother was born in Gloucester.


  2. What a treat to read this, especially since I’ve visited both Rockport and Gloucester! I loved both of them.


    • It’s a wonderful place to go smell the salt air. Probably the two most photographed places on the east coast, certainly in New England. I think Rockport is the most photographed harbor in the country or so I’ve been told. With good reason. We used to go to Gloucester often when we lived in Boston. It wasn’t a long drive from the city and the rocky coastline is a photographer’s delight. Pity about the fishing fleet … but George’s Banks was so depleted by over-fishing they had to close it to fishing or we would not have any more baby fish. The fisher folk refused to limit their catch off the Banks, so they wound up causing their worst fears to come true. People can be terribly short-sighted.


  3. I grew up on the water, I come from a long line of career fishermen/baymen. I loved the pictures, took me back to my childhood for a bit!


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