The Glimpses into the Past section of of this week's Gazette Journal makes several references to
If you're wondering what a pound net is, click here to view a blurry photo of one and an even blurrier write-up from when I first started this
Better yet, if Mathews Mark is reading perhaps he could leave us a comment describing what they are.
The bottom line is pound nets are on the Endangered Species List of the Chesapeake Bay, a list which includes watermen.
100 Years Ago
Thursday, Feb. 17, 1910
from the Mathews Journal
The fishermen are all busy, improving every reasonably good day, getting down stakes in order to set their pounds for the spring* fishing. The work is hard, the exposure is great, and they earn all they get. If something is not done to protect the pine woods,** it is only a question of time before they become a thing of the past. The fishermen in and around New Point will set about 400 pound nets this season. Perhaps each net will require an average of 125 stakes, which means 50,000 trees.
70 Years Ago
Thursday, Feb. 15, 1940
Large numbers of pound stakes, which had been driven by fishermen in preparation for the spring* shad run, were carried away by heavy ice floes last week as Tidewater thawed out from the heaviest freeze in years. This ice and snow which prevailed for almost two weeks created an almost unprecedented scarcity of oysters and fish.
* Did you see that? The word "spring" was mentioned twice in these February articles. Daylight
**The fact that I have 3 good-sized pine seedlings growing in my gutter as we speak gives me some degree of confidence that pine trees are not in short supply in Mathews County.
But the pound nets are a different story.