Boatbuilding in Winterton : the design, construction, and use of inshore fishing boats in a Newfoundland community

Taylor, David Alan (1980) Boatbuilding in Winterton : the design, construction, and use of inshore fishing boats in a Newfoundland community. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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    Available under License - The author retains copyright ownership and moral rights in this thesis. Neither the thesis nor substantial extracts from it may be printed or otherwise reproduced without the author's permission.
    (Original Version)

Abstract

The construction and use of inshore fishing boats is a distinctive and integral part of the culture of Newfoundland. Historically, the building of boats is one of the oldest traditions of material culture on the island. This thesis is a study of the living tradition of boatbuilding in the community of Winterton, Trinity Bay, Newfoundland. It attempts to describe the dynamics and functions of boatbuilding within the context of the community's social, economic and natural environment. -- The principal data for this work is derived from tape recorded interviews with seven Winterton boatbuilders, field measurements of boats, photographs of boats and boatbuilding activities, field drawings, and field observations. Fieldwork for the study was conducted in Winterton in 1978 and 1979. -- The central focus of the thesis is upon the three essential aspects of any object of material culture: design, construction, and use. In regard to design, a wide variety of factors, many of them conceptual, are examined, including: the transmission of boatbuilding knowledge; the use of moulds; the use of mental templates; performance correlatives; correction and improvement of design; experimentation; and, creativity. The process of construction is analyzed in two ways: by describing in detail the manner in which one man built one boat; and, by exploring variation in the factors which affect the construction activities of other boatbuilders. The question of boat use is applied to each of the four boat types constructed and used in Winterton (e.g. motor boat, rodney, bay punt, and speedboat). In addition to functional considerations, the genesis, evolution and general morphology of each type is discussed. -- Separate appendices contain: a boatbuilding survey questionnaire; portraits of informants; tables of offsets, stem and stern profiles, and lines plans of local boats; and, a glossary of terms used by Winterton boatbuilders. -- Because of the limited focus of this study, verifiable conclusions cannot be drawn about the nature of boatbuilding in other Newfoundland fishing communities. Confirmation of the existence of patterns of behaviour, in other communities, which are similar to those practiced in Winterton requires further research. To that end, this study provides a body of data for comparison, as well as theories and methodologies which may be applied in other localities.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/6958
Item ID: 6958
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves [400]-416. -- The original item has been divided into two parts for binding, which have been reassembled here as one digital item.
Department(s): Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > Folklore
Date: 1980
Date Type: Submission
Geographic Location: Canada--Newfoundland and Labrador--Avalon Peninsula--Winterton
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Boatbuilding; Fishing boats--Newfoundland and Labrador--Design and construction; Winterton (N.L.)

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