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Excerpts from "Fishing Grounds of the Gulf of Maine" by Walter H. Rich, US Dept of Commerce, Bureau of Fisheries 1929
Note: in this article, "trawling" refers to the use of long lines with hundreds of baited hooks, as opposed to "handlining" with no more than 3 or 4 hooks on the line.

Crie Ridges. These lie 4 miles NW from Matinicus Rock. 4 miles WSW from Criehaven or Ragged Island, and run SW from Western Ground toward Matinicus, distant 4 1/2 miles. Cod pollock and cusk are here in the spring and haddock are abundant in the fall.

Bald Ridges. These begin just outside Wooden Ball Island and run off in a nearly direct line for Matinicus Rock. They are each from 1/4 to 1/2 mile wide, are quite close together, the distances between them being not over 1/2 mile, and they are almost parallel with each other. Soundings show from 15 to 30 fathoms upon them, with a broken rocky bottom. The shoalest water is about 1 mile from Wooden Ball Island, the depth increasing toward the southern end.

This is a good cod ground at all times when the fishare on the coast, the spring school being the largest. The shoal is a favorite place for rock cod. Haddock are present here from January first to February 15. Hake areabundant in their season on the mud bottom inside the Bald Ridges 1 1/2 miles WSW in 50 fathoms. It is a good lobster ground.

Henry Marshalls Ground. This ground lies S by W from Matinicus Rock about 3 miles: its area is about 2 acres. The shoaler portion has a depth of 35 fathoms and a gravelly bottom; on the edge the depth is 45 fathoms and the bottom is of rocks and mud. Cod are taken here in the spring, haddock in January, and February and hake in the summer months. It is a good lobster ground.

The Bounties (The Bowdies) This ground bears SE by S 1/2 SS distant 6 miles from Wooden Ball Island. It is nearly circular in form, about 4 miles across and have depths from 40 to 60 fathoms. The bottom, of gravel and rocks, is somewhat broken. It is a good cod and cusk ground in spring and fall, and a haddock ground in winter, and is fished in vessels and sloops, mainly by trawling, but with a certain amount of hand-lining, in May and June.

A summer hake ground extends from 3 miles SSE of Seal Island to 4 miles SSE of the Wooden Ball: thus it is about 7 1/2 miles long by some 2 1/2 miles wide.

Minerva Hub. This bears SSE from Matinicus Rock, distant 6 miles This is a small gravelly spot about 1/4 mile in diameter and with a depth of 35 fathoms, abounding with cod in spring and fall. It is a summer ground for hake and cusk. Handlines and trawls are used.

Haddock Nubble. This lies SE 1/2 S from Matinicus Rock, distant 16 miles, and has an average depth of over 50 fathoms over a small circular patch some 2,000 feet across. The bottom is of gravel and rocks, and "lemons" and marine growths of like nature are abundant. This is a Jue cod ground, usually furnishing good haddocking also, from November to January, inclusive.

Skate Bank. This bank bears SSE from Matinicus Rock, distant 12 miles. It is about 2 miles in diamter and nearly circular in form. Depths are from 55 to 60 fathoms. The bottom is gravelly but quite uneaven. The best season on this ground for cod and cusk is from April to July. Halek about in July and AUgust Hand lines and trawls are used here, fished by sloops and vessels.

Matinicus Sou'Sou West Grounds. These grounds bear SSW from Matinicus Rock from which the inner edge of the grounds is distant 6 miles. They extend about 9 miles north and D and have about the same width, being nearly triangular in shape, broadest at the northern end. On the northern part there is a shoal of about 30 fathoms 2 miles long east and west, and 1 mile wide. Sharp rocks cover this, but the ground is not broken and drops off gradually to depths of 50 to 55 fathoms or even to 60 fathoms on the southern part.

Outside of the shoal, the bottom is pebbly and gravelly. This is one of the best cod and haddock grounds in the vicinity. Cod are sometimes abundant here all winter. Haddock are found here from December 1 to February and are more abundant than the cod. Hake are plentiful on this ground and in 60 fathoms on the mud off the edge SE of this ground during the summer season.

Marks: The high pinnacle on the eastern end of Wooden Ball, showing just out of Matinicus Rock SW by South from the rock 5 miles.

Inner Breaker This lies 2 miles W of the southwest point of Matinicus Island It is a rocky shoal of about one acre in extent, and having seven fathoms of water. From this shoal the bottom slopes gradually to depths of 25 to 30 fathoms, and this slope furnishes good fishing for cod in rMay and June, while haddock are here in December and January. A good school of hake is found on the edge of the ground in summer. The bottom is rocky and broken, and while sharp, is fished with trawls as well as hand lines. It is mostly a small boat ground.

Towhead Grounds These grounds bear N by E 1/2 E from Matinicus Island, from which they are distant 2 1/2 miles Depths are from 12 to 30 fathoms. It is somewhat irregular in shape, and has a very rocky broken bottom. The ground is from 2 1/2 to 3 miles long and 1/2 to 1 1/2 miles wide It is tends E by S and W by N and is considered one of the best inside shoal grounds for cod and haddock in the bay. Handlines and trawls are used here now, althoush in former times this and the preceeding grounds were considered too sharp for the use of trawls.

Both these are good lobster grounds and chiefly small-boat grounds.

The entire bay between Vinalhaven and Matinicus and Green Islands is full of broken, rocky patches of fishing ground, certain portions of which have recieved local names from the fishermen of the vicinity.

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