Coopers and Casks in the Whaling Trade 1800-1850

By Mark Howard, published November 1996


Most whale oil casks were fairly large which meant the staves were bigger, more numerous and the cask correspondingly more difficult to assemble. ‘A cooper at large work is an old man… at forty… his physical energies then are nearly all exhausted’, said one experienced cooper in 1850. The years they spent stooping over their work in the heat, smoke and clamour of the workshops also meant that coopers as a group tended to look older than their actual years.

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Filed under: Atlantic | High Middle Ages | Other (Early Modern) | Other (Nineteenth C) | Other (Eighteenth C) | Shipwrecks | Arctic | Other (location)
Subjects include: Archaeology | Harbours & Dockyards | Historic Vessels, Museums & Restoration | Whaling & Fishing

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