Thursday, 17 July 2014

"Herring saved our lives": Belgian fisheries and the First World War

The following is taken from an article by Brecht Demasure in the Belgian journal 'De Grote Rede' (in English) and concerns Belgian, given the geographical location of the coast Flemish is more appropriate, fisheries and the First World War.

"Nearly the entire Belgian fishing fleet left the country in October 1914. The fishermen who stayed behind succeeded in meeting the local needs under difficult circumstances. For refugee fishermen the war period was anything but wasted. They continued their activities operating from British, French and Dutch ports.

In this article we investigate to what degree the First World War was a turning point for sea fisheries. Was herring fishing crucial to the survival of the civilian population, as was the case in the Second World War (in other words: Did herring save our lives)? Were fishermen able to get back to work in Belgium after WWI? And what role did the seaside resort of Ostend play?"

More can be found via the online article.

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