Whaling in Martha's Vineyard
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Martha's Vineyard became an integral part of the whaling industry at the beginning of the eighteenth century and inspired a lasting romantic enthusiasm for life on the open ocean. From shorewhaling to daring voyages into the Atlantic, Pacific and Arctic Oceans, the insular whaling community offered a tempting path for many young Vineyarders to rise from cabin boy to captain. Local businesses were enticed by the potential profit from whaling voyages, and many reaped generous rewards from successful whale oil harvests. Through memoirs, music and memorabilia, author Thomas Dresser recounts this dramatic history of the bygone era of whaling on Martha's Vineyard.