Cutting up a dead whale, mid-20th century

Cutting up a dead whale, mid-20th century

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Credit: LIBRARY OF CONGRESS/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Cutting up a dead whale. Whaler standing on a whale carcass and using a tool to cut off the blubber (fat layer). The blubber is being pulled off the carcass by a steam winch. After hunting and killing a whale, whalers process the carcass for the oil, blubber and meat. Whale hunting reached a peak in the early 20th century, with up to 40,000 whales killed per year. Fears of extinction led to the signing of the International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling (1946). Photographed by the US Coast Guard between 1935 and 1945.

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