© Lunenburg County Historical Society 2012
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From the earliest time the ocean was a source of fish and a way of travel. The first Europeans to reach Nova Scotia from across the ocean may have been the Vikings, and certainly fishermen from many European nations have fished on the banks off the mouth of the LaHave. The richness of the fishery in our area was the cause of much of the rivalry between the French and the English (and New Englanders) throughout the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. It was also part of the cause of ill feeling among rival groups of Frenchmen who wished to enjoy as monopoly in the field.
We can talk about the development of the fishery from a European-based venture to the “sedentary” fishing stations established by Nicolas Denys (Liverpool and elsewhere) and others. (Denys describes the fishing methods in great detail.) Much of it remained unchanged except for the design of the fishing vessels until the second half of the 29th century when freezing replaced drying as a method of preserving the catch. Many of us remember the fish flakes outside stores in LaHave and elsewhere. (We have photos.)
The LaHave was also the centre of ship building and of a flourishing fleet of merchant vessels. We have a lot of information and pictures of both of these.
I suppose we should include under this heading the beaches and the tourist industry which have replaced most of the above!