Share memories and stories

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Shannon SmithAlbany Advertiser
Cheynes Beach Whaling Company flensers circa 1950.
Camera IconCheynes Beach Whaling Company flensers circa 1950. Credit: Supplied

Those with memories of Albany’s whaling history are being urged to share them before it is too late.

Albany’s Historic Whaling Station’s new project aims to paint a picture of what life was like before the end of the whaling industry 41 years ago.

It’s hoped the Whaler’s Tales: Oral Histories of Albany’s Past Whaling Community project can expand on the station’s small oral history collection, while those with a direct connection to the era are still alive.

People are encouraged to volunteer their information through digital archiving on the station’s website.

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Curator and archivist Kaitlin Weinert said the aim was to preserve an important element of Albany’s history that set the city apart.

“If you visited the station when it was operational, were an Albany local at the time, worked here yourself or knew someone that worked here, we want to hear your stories,” Ms Weinert said.

Funding from the Maritime Museums of Australia Project Support Scheme will allow a production company to interview, film and edit.

“Most of these light-hearted stories outline the antics of the employees, the pranks they pulled on each other or the cunningness of the sharks,” she said.

“But they are also a trove of important facts, like how the winches operated, the effect of whaling on their family life or the intricacies of different job roles.”

“Every little bit of information, however small, has great value.”

She said the selected participants had a range of connections to the whaling industry.

“This includes people who worked at the station, children that grew up here and the women who forged a close-knit community so far out of town,” she said.

Visit discoverybay.com.au or phone the station on 9844 4021.

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