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Lifelines: Canada's East Coast Fisheries

Cross Currents
500 Generations of Aboriginal Fishing 
in Atlantic Canada
Life on the Tide: 
A Winter Camp in Passamaquoddy Bay
Cross Currents: 
500 Generations of Aboriginal Fishing in Atlantic Canada


Milder temperatures and ready access to food encouraged people to settle in New Brunswick's Passamaquoddy Bay during the winter months. Dwellings were typically built in the Eastern Algonkian wigwam style, but were more heavily constructed. The winter house was also semi-subterranean, dug into the ground to ensure greater protection from the elements. Caches of dried and smoked food supplemented seasonal fresh fish and game. Shellfish collected from the inter-tidal zone along the beaches were also an important source of protein through the long winter. Their discarded shells formed large mounds or "middens" near the dwellings.

Excavated house pit - 
Photograph: David Sanger

View of excavated house pit - Shell Midden Site, Passamaquoddy Bay, New Brunswick
(Photo: David Sanger, Canadian Museum of Civilization)



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