Petticoat Whalers

By Joan Druett,

Book cover of Petticoat Whalers: Whaling Wives at Sea, 1820–1920

Book description

Joan Druett offers an informed and accessible account of little known stories of wives of whaling captains who accompanied their husbands on long and arduous journeys to bring whale oil and blubber to New England. Surprisingly, by 1850 roughly a sixth of all whaling vessels carried the captains' wives. Invariably…

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Why read it?

1 author picked Petticoat Whalers as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

Virtually every book on America’s whaling history focuses on men—the owners of ships and the crewmen who sailed on them. However, in the nineteenth century, women, and more specifically the captain’s wives, began appearing on whaleships in increasing numbers. Incredibly, by 1850, roughly one-sixth of all American whaling ships had these so-called “petticoat whalers” on board. Druett tells the fascinating stories of many of them, mixed in with more general whaling history.

From Eric's list on whaling history.

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