back story" of that event and its connection to our family.
A five page manuscript was found in a 34 page scrapbook containing newspaper clippings heralding the Deep Seas role in finding Japanese and Russian fishing fleets operating very close to Alaska.
And the reason for those contacts.
I scanned Dad's manuscript and present as he titled it, "Saga of the Deep Sea."
I am not sure why my Dad did what he did. But he left his comfort zone, working on tugboats, and shipped out on a crab processor, the "Deep Sea."
The "Saga," begins in Ballard Washington in January 1960. Here, in his own words, the story of his trip as Chief Engineer up to the Bering Sea. [ ... ] are editors clarifications.
Saga of the Bering Sea
Written by Harry McDonald
© 2012 Robert McDonald
|Crab are captured in a traditional round crab pot.|
|Fishing boat delivers catch to the Deep Sea.|
|Crab kept alive until moment of doom - the cooking pot!|
|Plucked from holding tank and conveyed to the kitchen!|
|Pete, Kenny and Nick use compressed air to blow crab meat out of legs, and pack in 20# boxes for the freezer.|
Wakefield Fisheries, Seattle, beside the Deep Sea, maintained shore installations at Port Wakefield, Seldovia, and Sand Point on Shumagin Island. Arriving at Port Wakefield on January 10th, we at once began unloading supplies and equipment at the freezing plant and taking aboard Aleuts to complete our crew. We departed for Trap Point near Olga Bay where we laid at the dock for 2½ months, processing the King crab.
|Deep Sea at Trap Point|
Our fishing fleet composed of the fishing vessels Foremost, Jeanette F, Miss Arctic, Dora R and Carl R fished on the Southern side of Kodiak Island, later shifting to Wide Bay, Agrapina Bay, and finally arrived at Kodiak, completing the season. [Some vessels were rigged as trawlers, others used traditional round crab pots.]
Hearing of reports that the Russians were fishing King crab in the Bering Sea, the Company prevailed on the fishermen to fish for another month and this time in the Bering Sea. The fishermen agreed so we sailed from Kodiak, arriving at Sand Point April 3rd, where we picked up the rest of the fleet that would be working with us out of Akutan Harbor.
King crab fishing is done both by Japan and United States in Bristol Bay waters, where studies are being conducted by the International North Pacific Fisheries Commission. In the Gulf of Alaska, only United States harvested the giant crabs. It was decided by the Company [Wakefield Fisheries] to investigate the rumors that the Russians were fishing in the Bering Sea so we set out in search for them.