If you're familiar with Gorton's and, by extension, the Gorton's Fisherman (everyone has seen the commercials), then you're likely familiar with the town of Gloucester without even realizing it. This seaside village has a long Massachusetts history and it's one that's been dedicated solely to fishermen and their families, who carry a plight that not many know of. The iconic memorial that sits in the center of town overlooking the ocean is one that also has a long and detailed history. It's not just the Gorton's fisherman, it's a symbol of the livelihood of Gloucester, and its longest fishing families, for centuries.


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As the oldest seaport in the country, one can imagine that Gloucester has plenty of stories that echo along its coastline. For more than 300 years, this seaside village has given way to some of the most avid fishing along the east coast. Those who choose to visit Gloucester, which is not far from the historic town of Salem or Cape Ann's gorgeous beachside town of Rockport, will also be greeted with the Gloucester Fisherman memorial upon their arrival. And when they do, this is the history they should know about.

'Down To The Sea In Ships'

The first thing people will see upon entering Gloucester is the eight-foot-tall statue that sits on a base that reaches a height of five feet, with a unique inscription. The writing on the front reads, 'They that go down in ships' with a date that reads 1623 - 1923. This unique statue of a fisherman at the helm of a ship wheel represents 300 years of fishermen and their families that called Gloucester their home.

If you didn't think that you knew Gloucester and don't know about the Gorton's Fisherman, then perhaps you've heard of the movie The Perfect Storm. This movie was based on the true story of Andrea Gail, which was lost in a major storm in 1991. This monster storm took the lives of the six men who made up the crew and the ship itself was never found. The crew's names join an etching of 500 names of sailors and fishermen who have been lost to the sea between 1716 and 2001, with an additional 5,000 added to the city's nearby mural.

Not far from this memorial is the memorial dedicated to the families of the fishermen who have lived, and live in Gloucester. This statue is tributed to the long-suffering family of the fishermen who spend weeks and even months waiting on their husbands, fathers, brothers, and sons to come back home. The statue can be found down Stacey Esplanade and was curated by Gloucester Fishermen's Wives Association, dedicated in 2001. Similar to the Gorton Fisherman, this memorial stands at eight feet as well atop a boulder, featuring a woman looking out over the sea, her children on either side of her.

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