"Drawing on our History:

Fishing Vessels of the Pacific Northwest and Alaska"
A new book featuring the life's work from the avocation of the author, James A. Cole.
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[For more, and to view a schedule of readings, please see the about page].

In sixteen chapters, Drawing on our History covers commercial fishing vessels from the carved cedar canoes built by the Native groups of the Pacific Northwest of the U. S. and British Columbia, through all of the early and contemporary commercial vessel types, including the most up-to-date freezer longliners launched and delivered in 2013.

Each chapter is devoted to a specific vessel type, opening with a painting of the vessel by the author. The chapters describe how the designs evolved and are depicted with over 120 design and pen-and-ink drawings. The text includes tables of vessel characteristics.

Sidebars include interviews with veteran fishermen, boat builders, or their family members. Some of these visits were with people that are now long deceased, which helps connect today's reader to the essential culture of another time.


In late May of 2014, Drawing on our History was awarded a Silver Medal in the Transportation Category at the Independent Publisher annual awards in New York, USA, one of over 4,000 submissions in seventy-eight categories. The book is now a Benjamin Franklin Award winner, and the author is quite proud.

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