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Stephen of Philadelphia by  James Otis

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SEA FOOD

THEN as to fish, the waters were almost actually alive with them! My father and I have taken upward of two hundred weight in a single hour, and before we were ashore from the John and Sarah a month, we had stored in our outer room as much of salted fish as [39] we could have eaten in two years, even though we had been ravenously hungry all the while.

From sturgeon to perch, we could have all the fish we cared to catch, and the sorrow of it was that the poor, starving wretches I have seen in Bristol might not have had some little portion of what we were not able to eat.


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We had, while we lived in that cave home, and many years afterward, for that matter, oysters such as you never dreamed of, as to size. I have seen them again and again six full inches in length, when one must cut them with a knife into portions, since they were far too large to be taken into the mouth whole.

Then there were crabs, cockles, and mussels in such great More that he who went out to gather for himself brought back enough for his neighbors, finding these shellfish so plentiful that but little labor was needed to get as much as a dozen persons could eat.

[40] Surely I have set down enough to let you know that we had food in such store as was like to make us wasteful, and the wonder of it was that we did not grow into mountains of fat while we waited for the Amity and the Factor.


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