Port Armstrong, Baranof Island

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Port Armstrong is an estuary, about 1 mile (1.6 km) long, on the east coast of Baranof Island, and 4 miles (6.5 km) north of Port Alexander, Alaska. The bay was named by Captain George Vancouver, of the Royal Navy, during his stay in Port Conclusion between August 1 and August 22, 1794.

The U.S. Whaling Company operated here from 1912 to 1923. The company killed 314 whales in its first season of operation. Modern harpoon guns were partly responsible for the high volume. These guns replaced traditional hand-thrown harpoons and could shoot a bomb-tipped harpoon 120 feet (36 m). When a harpoon struck, the bomb would explode inside the whale.

Only one third as many whales were caught in 1913 and catches remained low in following years. In 1923, the company moved to New Zealand. Port Armstrong is now the site of a salmon hatchery. Read more here and here. Click here to download the CoastView app and explore Port Armstrong.


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