Fish into Wine: The Newfoundland Plantation in the Seventeenth Century

By Dr. Peter E. Pope

Fish into Wine: The Newfoundland Plantation in the Seventeenth Century

Combining innovative archaeological analysis with historical research, in Fish into Wine, Dr. Peter Pope examines the way of life that developed in seventeenth-century Newfoundland, where settlement was sustained by seasonal migration to North America's oldest industry, the cod fishery.

The unregulated English settlements that grew up around the exchange of fish for wine served the fishery by catering to nascent customer demand. The English Shore became a hub of transatlantic trade, linking Newfoundland with the Chesapeake, new and old England, southern Europe, and the Atlantic islands.

Dr. Pope gives special attention to Ferryland, the proprietary colony founded by Sir George Calvert, Lord Baltimore, in 1621, but later taken over by the London Merchant Sir David Kirke and his family. The saga of the Kirkes proves a narrative line connecting social and economic developments on the English Shore with metropolitan merchants, proprietary rivalries and international competition.

Employing a rich variety of evidence to place the fisheries in the context of transatlantic commerce, Dr. Pope makes Newfoundland a fresh point of view for understanding the demographic, economic and cultural history of the expanding North Atlantic world.

Dr. Pope is a professor in Memorial's Department of Anthropology.

Catherine Desbarats of McGill University calls Fish Into Wine socioeconomic history at its imaginative and scrupulous best. “Peter Pope unsettles many hackneyed claims about Newfoundland's seventeenth-century past by combining exuberant mastery of local detail with large-scale insights into early modern transatlantic capitalism.”