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Oral history with Henry and Mamie (Renard) Macaux

  • September 27, 1976
University of Wisconsin System
  • Full audio file. Tape 1, Side 1, Part 1 - Introduction. Tape 1, Side 1, Part 2 - Fishing; hook-and-line for herring gill nets for perch, some herring,. Tape 1, Side 1, Part 3 - 1918 best year for fishing. Caught 250 lbs. herring in one day hook-and-line. Tape 1, Side 1, Part 4 - Describes use of gill nets. Left fish in nets one week before hauling in. Tape 1, Side 1, Part 5 - 17 or 18 years old when he began fishing; fished with his brother. Tape 1, Side 1, Part 6- Occupational history; farming, shipyards, carpentry work. Hired out to help out fishermen; the Peltiers and Robillards. Paid $ 1.50 per day in ca. 1918. Tape 1, Side 1, Part 7 - Owned 15-20 gill nets. Tape 1, Side 1, Part 8 - Didn't use pound nets because it's "a bigger job fishing pound nets." Tape 1, Side 1, Part 9 - His jobs on the ice; chopping holes in ice, pulling nets in, taking fish out when lifted. Tape 1, Side 1, Part 10 - Shipped fish to depot in Maplewood; tagged and put in boxes. No market in Green Bay, mainly in Chicago. In 1924-25 market opened up in Green Bay. Tape 1, Side 1, Part 11 - Fishing "interesting," "cold". Tape 1, Side 1, Part 12 - Running a farm and fishing. Did chores in morning; arrived home at 5:00 to do chores at night; milked and fed cows, fed horses. Tape 1, Side 1, Part 13 - Farming was more important economically than fishing. Fishing considered a sideline. Tape 1, Side 1, Part 14 - Depression years. No price on milk, cattle, pigs. Raised wheat, oats, rye, barley and hay at that time. Milked ca. 15 cows, hauled to cheese factor. Got 10 [cents] per lb. for fish (perch and herring). Fishing of same importance at other times. Tape 1, Side 1, Part 15 - Difficult times on ice-makeshift bridges to get across cracks in ice. Tape 1, Side 1, Part 16 - Did no summer fishing. Most in area fished gill nets, some had pound, too. Tape 1, Side 1, Part 17 - Robillards, Peltiers and LaViolettes main fishing families. Fishermen from Suamico, Oconto set nets on this side of the Bay.. Tape 1, Side 1, Part 18 - Smelts; dip nets used in Sugar Creek. Tape 1, Side 1, Part 19 - Felt there were few regulations; license required for net fishing only. Tape 1, Side 1, Part 20 - No fishing organizations; "everyone worked on his own." Tape 1, Side 1, Part 21 - Why quit fishing; getting older, found other jobs. Stopped in 1930. Her family's fishing experience is related. Tape 1, Side 1, Part 22 - Didn't sell many fish directly to local people. Tape 1, Side 1, Part 23 - Smoking fish. Smokehouse on property. Built of brick--old wooden one caught fire from grease and burned. Describes process; soak in brine overnight. Smoking itself takes 3 hrs. per 100 fish. Taste best when warm. In 1920-21 did most smoking; more fish. Smoked ca. once a week; everytime nets in. Used maple or apple wood. Fish then could keep for about 2 weeks. Pickled herring and smelt. Most people in area had smokehouses; also smoked pork and salted it; built fire every day for a week until it was smoked. Tape 1, Side 1, Part 24 - Ate one or two meals of fish per week. Her family ate it every day. Her mother smoked the fish in the family. Mrs. Macaux doesn't smoke fish herself; never learned from her mother. Tape 1, Side 1, Part 25. End.
  • Material owned by University of Wisconsin - Green Bay. No reproduction without permission from the Special Collections Department Cofrin Library, University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, 2420 Nicolet Drive, Green Bay WI 54311

Publication Details

Green, Linda
Macaux, Henry
Macaux, Henry, Mrs.
September 27, 1976
University of Wisconsin System
Description of Original
Sound recording(s)
For Staff