Lapas attēli
PDF
ePub

MACKEREL FISHING.

By Senator Frye: Q. What distance from shore have the bulk of your mackerel been taken up there this year?-A. About 4 to 6 miles.

Q. Taking it through the whole length of the coast, where have the bulk of the mackerel been taken in our own waters?-A. From 35 to 40 miles from the shore.

Q. In all your mackerel fishing together, where have you taken the bulk of your fish, in American or Canadian waters?-A. In American waters. Q. What proportion in American waters?-A. Nine-tenths.

By Senator EDMUNDS: Q. Is that true of the great mass of the American mackerel fleet?-A. I don't know that; I have no experience.

Senator EDMUNDS. The statistics will show.

NATIONALITY OF FISHERMEN,

By Senator SAULSBURY: Q. Have you any means of knowing about what proportion of the fishermen are native-born Americans?-A. No; I have not.

Q. Do the vessels that go out from here carry part of their crews from the provinces, or do they take them all from here, as a general rule?-A. Now they take them all from here; they are not allowed to take them down there.

Q. They are not allowed to employ them there?-A. No, sir.

FREE FISH.

By Senator FRYE: Q. What is there that Canada can give us that will be an equivalent for the privilege to them of sending their fish into our market free?-A. There is nothing.

BAIT.

Q. Have you need to go in there to buy bait?-A. I don't use any bait.

Q. Do our cod fishermen go in there to buy bait?—A. They can get along without it very well.

Q. So that, so far as you know, there is nothing Canada can give which would be regarded by you as an equivalent for a free market to them?–A. No, sir.

a

TESTIMONY OF CAPT. RICHARD WARREN.

GLOUCESTER, Mass., October 4, 1886. Capt. RICHARD WARREN, sworn and examined.

By Senator EDMUNDS:
Q. Where do you reside?-A. In Gloucester.
Q. What is your occupation?-A. Fishing.
Q. What kind of fishing?-A. Mackerel, wholly.
Q. How long have you been in the business?-A. Thirty-five years.
Q. How long as master?-A. Twenty-six.

Q. Whereabouts have you fished mainly?-A. I have done most of my fishing for the last fifteen years on this coast; previous to that in the Gulf of St. Lawrence.

Q. Previous to 1871 you fished for how many years in the Gulf of St. Lawrence? A. Nearly twenty years.

THREE-MILE LIMIT.

Q. Taking the St. Lawrence fisheries, where did you get the bulk of your mackerel as respects the three-mile shore line?-A. I should judge that for the twenty years I was inside the Bay of St. Lawrence I hardly saw the shore, being off the northwest point of Prince Edward's Island.

Q. You were a good many miles from that point?-A. Yes, sir; twenty to forty.

HABITS OF MACKEREL.

Q. Do the mackerel up there have the habit of staying about the same particular place each year?-A. At that particular time we were hooking, not seining, and that

used to be a very choice part of the St. Lawrence for us to fish. There are many men in the room now who used to fish there-old, experienced men—and we fished there years and years.

SUPPLIES.

Q. In that twenty years or so how many times in a season did you find it necessary to go into any British port for supplies other than wood and water, and for shelter and to repair damages?--A. I don't recollect during my first ten years down there that I ever went in for supplies; I might possibly have done so; but I did not go in for anything more than wood and water.

HOOK AND LINE vs. SEINE.

Q. When did the hook-and-line fishing from vessels chiefly stop, and you take up the purse or other kind of seine fishing?-A. I presume about 1875 there was quite a large majority went to seine fishing; I think it was in 1875.

Q. About how long are these purse seines?—Two hundred fathoms and upward.
Q. How deep?-A. About 20 fathoms deep.
Q. So they would touch bottom in 20-fathom water?-A. Yes, sir.

By Senator Frye:
Q. What do they cost?-A. In the neighborhood of a thousand dollars; near that.

By Senator EDMU'NDS: Q. I suppose seines are made in the United States by machinery?—A. Yes, sir; they are made principally in Boston; some are made in Gloucester at present.

THREE-MILE LIMIT.

Q. Did you fish in the St. Lawrence waters during the existence of the treaty of 1871?—A. Yes, sir.

Q. And during that time, if I understand you, you fished outside of the three miles?-A. There wasn't very much fishing, either. There were very few fish caught while I was there, and so I didn't remain long; I came out after I was there a short time.

Q. Have you fished there since?-A. I fished there six weeks; nearly two months.

Q. Have you had any difficulty with the authorities in any way in regard to your vessel?-A. No, sir; I haven't visited their harbors; I only visited one harbor during all the time I was down there.

Q. Did you see many Canadian fishermen down there?-A. I saw a good many.

Q. Where were they fishing?-A. In the same waters we were during the time I was there; I saw more or less of them every day.

Q. I should infer from what you say that, like our vessels, they catch the bulk of their mackerel by the present methods, with seines, and outside the three miles?A. Wholly, so far as I know; very few mackerel are taken by Canadian vessels, inside, I think.

Q. From your knowledge of that fishery do you consider the right for you and your fellow-fishermen to catch mackerel within three miles of the shore of any substantial value?-A. O, no, sir; it is a detriment to us to go inshore. That coast abounds in rocks, and the waters are shallow, especially along the east coast of New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island; and it is a detriment to go into those shallow waters, for they are about sure to lose their seines or tear them badly. It is an advantage to us to keep away from shore.

Q. The water is deep around Magdalen Islands, is it not?-A. No, sir; it is shallow, mostly.

By Senator FRYE:
Q. It is rocky, is it not?-A. Very rocky.

AVERAGE VOYAGE.

By Senator Edmunds:
Q. How long does it take you to make a voyage?-A. Owing to circumstances.
Q. But take an average from four or five seasons together, what would you calcu-
late to be the necessary time from the Magdalen Islands?

The WITNESS. Making the passage?
Senator EDMUNDS. Yes.
A. To go and return it would take about two weeks.

S. Doc. 231, pt 5-46

Q. That would be a round trip?—A. A round trip; that could be done easily in fourteen days.

Q. In an average year of, say twenty years back, how many voyages would the Gloucester schooners be able to make up there and back?-A. It is pretty hard to get at the average, because they differ so much. Often they make three voyages from here to the Gulf of St. Lawrence in a sailing vessel and back again.

Q. And sometimes, I suppose, they do not make more than one?-A. Yes, sir. I have made four by landing.

FREE FISH.

Q. I will ask you the same question that Mr. Frye has asked the other witnesses: Is there anything in the fishery way that you would consider to be an equivalent that Canada could give us for giving her the right to market both salt and fresh fish free into our ports?-A. No.

By Senator Frye: Q. What is the effect of a free market upon our fisheries?—A. As far as I understand it, we certainly would be obliged to haul out of the business in a very short time; that would be the case, I think, with every one that follows it here in this part of the country.

Q. In your opinion, then, in ten or fifteen years' time it would destroy the fishery trade of our country?-A. Wholly.

Q. Would you go over there?-A. We should be obliged to if we wanted to continue in the fishing business.

RELATIVE COST OF UNITED STATES AND CANADIAN VESSELS.

Q. Why can we not compete with them?-A. It is impossible for us to do it on account of the difference between our systems of producing vessels and running them.

Q. Such as what?-A. They have a very different method of running them, and they fit them out differently, and the crews don't expect the same living.

c. How much more should you say it would cost to build our vessels than theire?A. A new vessel of a hundred tons can be built there ready for sea at a cost of $6,300, and one of ours of the same tonnage would surely cost $10,000.

O'TFITS AND COST OF LIVING.

Q. How about outfits?-A. They live differently. We get the best there is in the market, in the shape of food of all kinds, to put aboard our vessels, but they go under a different system: they can eat a barrel of herring with a relish at which our fishermen would turn up their noses. Our outfit costs nearly one-half more. They get four very much cheaper, and they live so differently in every way. We use a barrel of beef every twenty days, and they would take two months in consuming it; they use it only once a day, when we have it on the table all the time. They don't have any luxuries at all.

Q. On the whole, how much more expensive should you say would be the whole cost of outfit and everything else for an American vessel than for a Canadian?-A. Fully one-third more, according to my judgment.

Q. Do they have any advantage of you in getting their mackerel to market more quickly?-A. That must be an avantage. They have not commenced, but, so far as my knowledge goes, another season they will supply our market nearly altogether.

INCREASE OF FRESH-FISH BUSINESS.

Q. What do you know, if anything, about the increase of the fresh-fish market in this country in the last ten years?-A. I know it has increased more than 30 per cent in the last ten years; I have been connected with it for the last fifteen years.

Q. What effect has that had upon the salt-fish market?-A. It has reduced it, of

course.

Q. Is there a constant and growing increase in the use of fresh fish in this country?A. Yes; there is.

Q. Caused, I suppose, by the increased convenience in the transportation of fresh fish?-A. Yes, sir.

Q. You can distribute fresh fish now all over the country by rail?-A. Yes, sir; whereas a few years ago there was a very small quantity of fish shipped in that way.

Q. In your opinion, will that trade continue to increase? -A. I don't see why it should not.

Q. Do you think, then, that the Canadians, under the item in the tariff act, “Fish, fresh for immediate consumption,” should be permitted to send in all these frozen fish?-A. I don't suppose they ought, but it appears that they have been.

CURING OF FRESH FISII AFTER ENTRY.

Q. Suppose a cargo of frozen halibut or any other kind of fish was brought here and landed as “Fish, fresh, for immediate consumption,” the wholesaler who buys them transships them to Boston or New York, does he not?-A. Yes, sir.

Q. Is there any way for the custom-house officer here to follow them in order to see that they are not cured afterwards?—A. There is a way to follow them, but certainly I have never known anything of that kind to transpire.

Q. They can, and undoubtedly do, cure a great many of these fish that are so entered?-A. I have not the slightest doubt of it.

Q. If the market is very strong they will not lose them?-A. No, sir; they cure them. The fish can be brought in fresh to-ılay and salted to-morrow, and the public know nothing about it.

EFFECT OF THE TREATY OF 1870–71.

Q. What has been the effect of the treaty of 1870–71 upon the Canadian fisheries?A. I haven't had much experience down there in the last few years; I have only been there one or two years.

Q. What effect has it had upon our business here?-A. You can see that every day without asking the question.

Q. What is the effect?—A. The amount of it is that we get in surplus fish here in town that we can't dispose of.

Q. Is it driving your fishermen out of the business?--A. Certainly; lots of them. Q. How large is your fleet here now?-A. I don't know how large it is.

DUTY.

Q. What do you want of the United States Government so far as fisheries are concerned?-A. I should like to add to the duty.

Q. What do you say the duty ought to be?-A. I am not prepared to say what I think it ought to be, but I think it ought to be enough to keep the Canadian fish out and give the American fishermen a chance to live.

Q. Can the American people supply the American market?-A. I presume they can; they usually did before Canada got a fleet of fishermen of her own.

Q. In your opinion, should there be a duty on frozen fish?—A. Yes, sir; there should be.

Q. Do you know anything about the retail market?-A. I know something about it.

EFFECT OF DUTY UPON THE CONSUMER.

Q. The fishermen sell to the wholesaler?-A. Usually, yes.

Q. And the wholesaler to the jobber. Now, what is the difference between the price the fisherman receives for his fish and what the consumer pays for his?-A. That is a pretty hard question for me to answer, because it varies so much; of course there is some considerable difference; at times there is a big difference, and then at other times there may be less.

Q. Does the fisherman average more than two-thirds of the price paid by the consumer?-A. Usually not, I think. That is putting it a little small, perhaps; I should think they did a little better than that.

Q. From your experience, does the duty on fish affect the price of fish to the consumer; I do not mean to the wholesaler?--A. Yes; it does.

Q. How?-A. I don't know as it does to the consumer, either. Q. If there is any effect, is it not between the wholesaler and the fisherman?-A. That is just what it is usually; to the consumer I don't know as it makes any difference.

а

CLOSE TIME.

Q. What do you say about close time for mackerel?-A. I think it would be a good plan to close it up to the 1st of June, or better still, I think, to the 1st of July,

By Senator EDMUNDS: Q. State your grounds for thinking so.-A. On account of the scarcity of fish, which results from catching so many fish early in the season, and catching them before they have a chance to spawn.

Q. That would be a round trip?-A. A round trip; that could be done easily in fourteen days.

Q. In an average year of, say twenty years back, how many voyages would the Gloucester schooners be able to make up there and back?–A. It is pretty hard to get at the average, because they differ so much. Often they make three voyages from here to the Gulf of St. Lawrence in a sailing vessel and back again.

Q. And sometimes, I suppose, they do not make more than one?-A. Yes, sir. I have made four by landing.

FREE FISH.

Q. I will ask you the same question that Mr. Frye has asked the other witnesses: Is there anything in the fishery way that you would consider to be an equivalent that Canada could give us for giving her the right to market both salt and fresh fish free into our ports?—A. No.

By Senator Frye: Q. What is the effect of a free market upon our fisheries?-A. As far as I understand it, we certainly would be obliged to haul out of the business in a very short time; that would be the case, I think, with every one that follows it here in this part of the country.

Q. In your opinion, then, in ten or fifteen years' time it would destroy the fishery trade of our country?--A. Wholly.

Q. Would you go over there?--A. We should be obliged to if we wanted to continue in the fishing business.

RELATIVE COST OF UNITED STATES AND CANADIAN VESSELS.

Q. Why can we not compete with them?-A. It is impossible for us to do it on account of the difference between our systems of producing vessels and running them.

Q. Such as what?-A. They have a very different method of running them, and they fit them out differently, and the crews don't expect the same living.

Q. How much more should you say it would cost to build our vessels than theirs?-A. A new vessel of a hundred tons can be built there ready for sea at a cost of $6,300, and one of ours of the same tonnage would surely cost $10,000.

OUTFITS AND COST OF LIVING.

Q. How about outfits?--A. They live differently. We get the best there is in the market, in the shape of food of all kinds, to put aboard our vessels, but they go under a different system: they can eat a barrel of herring with a relish at which our fishermen would turn up their noses. Our outfit costs nearly one-half more. They get flour very much cheaper, and they live so differently in every way. We use a barrel of beef every twenty days, and they would take two months in consuming it; they use it only once a day, when we have it on the table all the time. They don't have any luxuries at all.

Q. On the whole, how much more expensive should you say would be the whole cost of outfit and everything else for an American vessel than for a Canadian?-A. Fully one-third more, according to my judgment.

Q. Do they have any advantage of you in getting their mackerel to market more quickly?–A. That must be an advantage. They have not commenced, but, so far as my knowledge goes, another season they will supply our market nearly altogether.

INCREASE OF FRESHI-FISH BUSINESS.

course.

Q. What do you know, if anything, about the increase of the fresh-fish market in this country in the last ten years?-A. I know it has increased more than 50 per cent in the last ten years; I have been connected with it for the last fifteen years.

Q. What effect has that had upon the salt-fish market?-A. It has reduced it, of

Q. Is there a constant and growing increase in the use of fresh fish in this country?A. Yes; there is.

Q. Caused, I suppose, by the increased convenience in the transportation of fresh fish?-A. Yes, sir.

Q. You can distribute fresh fish now all over the country by rail?-A. Yes, sir; whereas a few years ago there was a very small quantity of fish shipped in that way.

Q. In your opinion, will that trade continue to increase? -A. I don't see why it should not.

« iepriekšējāTurpināt »