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Fish sheds and brine tanks PDF Print E-mail

Stone and corrugated iron sheds dotted the harbour area. They provided shelter for the men and women whose task it was to process the fish.  After the fish were scaled and gutted, they were rubbed with salt and placed in a brine tank overnight.  In the morning the stopper was removed from the drain at the drain-holes are still visible), the fishremoved, packed in wooden crates and transported for sale in Cape Town, Caledon and the surrounding

Fish Drying Stands PDF Print E-mail

Fish drying stand  or "bokkum" stand.  "Bokkums" or "doppies" were small fish salted and hung on poles to dry.  Bigger fish, such as snoek, were also sometimes treated this way to preserve them.

Bokkum Stand in old harbour

Sea wall and Breakwater PDF Print E-mail

Sea wall and breakwater -Until the breakwater was built in 1904, only the sea-wall provided protection from heavy seas and spring tides.

Airshot of the Old Harbour

Gutting Tables PDF Print E-mail

Before these tables were built in 1936, fish were cleaned on wooden tables and benches wherever a level spac permitted out of the way of the boats landing.
Crane Hub PDF Print E-mail

The crane was built in about 1910 at the water's edge. The idea behind it was to lessen the
back-breaking task of lifting the boats out of the water.  It was a disaster.  The sling was hitched
under the boat, and the crane slowly lifted it clear of the water.  As it tookthe weight, the sling tightened and crushed the boat.  It was tried only once more with the same result, andthen abandoned.

Turning Stone PDF Print E-mail

A rather inconspicuous, orange,  squarish stone cemented into the hard (landing area), this stone was important to the fishermen who landed their boats bow to the beach. The boats were carried out of the water by 14 to 16 men. When they reached the turning stone, they rested the keel on it and swiveled the boat around so the bow pointed to the sea, and the boat was facing the right way of launching.
The winch and cable roller PDF Print E-mail

The winch and cable roller were installed in an unsuccessful attempt to avoid the strenuous task of carrying the boat out of the water, a task which reputedly cost men  their lives.  The fishermen found the winch too slow, especially when several boats returned to the harbour at the same time, often in
bad weather, so it was seldom used.

Boat Building Area PDF Print E-mail

Once called the "hospial", this is where boats were built and repared.
Museum Building PDF Print E-mail

The building on the ramp leading down into the harbour was re-erected in 1977 and is a replica of the buildings which  stood in the harbour in 1915. Originally these sheds housed fishing tackle, oars and sailing gear, and the brine tanks of the fishermen. Now they house the museum exhibition area and tearoom.

War Memorial PDF Print E-mail

This was erected in 1929 to the memory of those who fell in the Great War.  In proportion to its population, Hermanus sent moremen to both wars than any othertown in South Africa.  In recognition to this record, the Union Government presented two war trophies (field guns) in 1929 to be mounted on either side of the stone cairn. 

There eventually fell into disrepair and were replaced in 1963 by the present naval guns.  Let into the stonework above the bronze plaque inscribed with the names of those who fell in both wars, is an aneroid barometer "to assit to protect the lives of present and future fishermen who represented the majority of the fallen of this area".



Hermanus started in 1855
Allengenski Complex built in 1870
Harbour wall was built in 1904
Crane was built in 1915
Gutting tables were built in 1935
Last boats in Old Harbour 1958 

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