Artifact Archive

Anchors to hold floating traps

You may have seen these anchors around town without knowing exactly what they were used for. In 1880, the salmon canning industry expanded their floating fish traps to Southeast Alaska, though indigenous stationary traps had been in use long before that time. Strong tidal currents and rocky, deep locations required good anchors to hold floating traps in place, as well as a watchman to keep an eye on the trap 24 hours a day. Floating fish traps were controversial because of their efficiency and eventually were outlawed. There are two anchors outside the Museum.

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