The Pacific salmon fishery and the canning industry it supports have recently lost their status as the one of the most valuable fisheries in the world. In this study of early modern business, Dianne Newell discusses the beginning of the North American salmon canning industry, working from archives left by one of the leaders in the field, Henry Doyle.
Doyle (1874-1961) was founder and first general manager of a major consolidation of packing companies, British Columbia Packers Association (established in 1902), which became British Columbia Packers Ltd., one of the few pioneer fish-packing companies that remains viable today. He was recognised by friends and enemies alike as the unofficial industry historian not only for British Columbia but also for Alaska and the Pacific US coastal states. Doyle was a vora-cious collector of "intelligence," whose extensive papers, now stored in the archives of the University of British Columbia, constitute the only comprehensive insider's history of the rise of the industry.
Newell has culled this collection of documents for revealing highlights, important trends, and events within this profitable industry. These documents are reproduced in the text and are supported by editorial essays, annotations, a statistical appendix, and a lengthy glossary of historical terms. The result is an intriguing combination of both the personal and the scholarly view of this industry through its most exciting and critical years.