Song or Story
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To say that “Herring and Pollock” is a fish story is an understatement.
Now, when I was a kid, I was just going to grammar school, I used to get out of school and come up and the tide served right. And right down here around Dog Island, the herring would be, I’d make the remark that I thought the herring were so thick on the water up against the beach that you could almost walk on them with snowshoes. Well, on the outside of them was cod and big pollock, and the big pollock was chasing them, and them herring would come ashore. And I’ve seen people, they’d have a pitchfork with five or six tines on it, and they’d wade out as far as they could; the pollock come in, they’d stick the pitchfork in and throw ‘em up the beach. I was a kid, and I’d go along these little herring, they’d be up on the rocks right along the edge of the water; I used to take pity on the fish, I’d used to pick ‘em up and throw ‘em back in the water. That was a certain time of year those herring would hit these places here and, of course, other times the factories didn’t get any support from this local stuff.
William Lawrence, Hugh French, Eastport, Maine, Passamaquoddy Bay, herring, pollock, pitchfork, fishing
Folklore | Oral History
Lawrence, William. 1979. “Herring and Pollock.” NA1333, CD770.5. Northeast Archives of Folklore and Oral History, Raymond H. Fogler Special Collections Department, University of Maine.