Voices from the Fisheries Handbook

Last Updated: July 07, 2009

Voices from the Fisheries HandbookPreserving Local Fisheries Knowledge, Linking Generations, and Improving Environmental Literacy

Voices From the Fisheries Handbook is an oral history handbook written for teachers as well as marine-oriented and other community organizations. The handbook includes information of how to develop projects and conduct oral history interviews.

Authors Julie Bartsch, Susan Abbott-Jamieson, and Joyce Whitmore prepared Voices from the Fisheries Handbook for National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration Fishers Service (NOAA Fisheries) from their experiences working on a three-year Local Fisheries Knowledge (LFK) Project in two coastal Maine communities. The Handbook complements the NOAA Fisheries website "Voices from the Fisheries Database," a central repository for consolidating, archiving, and disseminating oral history interviews related to commercial, recreational, and subsistence fishing in the Unites States and its territories.

Voices from the Fisheries Handbook shares strategies, lessons learned, and sample curricula for use in a variety of formal and informal educational settings interested in attempting similar worthwhile endeavors of documenting and preserving local fisheries knowledge.

Oral history interviews are a powerful way to document the human experience with our marine, coastal, and Great Lakes environments and our living marine resources. Each story archived in the Voices from the Fisheries Database provides a unique example of this connection collected from fishermen, their spouses, processing workers, shoreside business workers and operators, recreational and subsistence fishermen, scientists, marine resources managers, and others -- all among NOAA's fishery stakeholders.

Separately, each history provides an in-depth view into the professional and personal lives of individual participants. Together, they have the power to illuminate common themes, issues and concerns across diverse fishing communities over time. The Voices from the Fisheries Database is a powerful resource available to the public to inform, educate, and provide primary information for researchers interested in our local, human experience with the surrounding marine environment.

Click here to download Voices From the Fisheries Handbook (133 pages/4.6mb), or visit the "Voices from the Fisheries Database" online at www.voices.nmfs.noaa.gov/index.html.