Films about the commercial fishing industry and other aspects of the working waterfront are screened on the third Friday of each month at 7:00 p.m. in the theater of the New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park’s Corson Maritime Learning Center, located at 33 William Street. Presented by New Bedford Fishing Heritage Center and New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park.

Dock-U-Mentaries is open to the public and presented free of charge.

April 21 Massachusetts Story (Gordon Massingham, 1977)

Massachusetts Story studies the then proposed oil drilling on Georges Bank and its potential impact on the New England Seacoast- particularly the fishing industry. It was produced and directed by Gordon Massingham, a native of New Bedford and features many scenes of the port in that era. It was instrumental in alerting the public to the potential hazards of exploration. Following its initial broadcast, Massachusetts Story was nominated for three Emmy’s – Outstanding Achievement in Documentary, Public Affairs Programming, and Direction. The film won numerous other awards and was screened at many prestigious venues, including New York’s Museum of Modern Art and Boston’s Museum of Science.

May 19 Fishing for Knowledge: Cooperative Research for Sustainable Fisheries in New England

Researchers from the UMass Dartmouth School for Marine Science and Technology’s Department of Fisheries Oceanography will present ongoing cooperative fisheries research. Join us to learn about these exciting projects and collaborations between the local fishing industry and fisheries scientists.

June 16 Shad Double Feature

In the 1960s, folk music legend and environmental activist Pete Seeger, despairing over the pollution of the Hudson River, launched a project to clean it up. Hudson Shad (1974) is an 18-minute documentary chronicling the work of Pete Seeger and the “River Keepers” to clean up the Hudson River, keeping the waters clean enough for the shad to thrive. The film contains rare footage of shad fishermen at work on the Hudson. (photo: Pete Seeger with grandson Tao Rodriguez-Seeger. Photo by Larry Long)

For generations, men and women of the Connecticut Valley have worked to harvest shad. Today there are very few who continue to keep the tradition alive, setting the nets, cleaning and boning the fish, and delivering them to market. A Passion for Shad (2002), produced the by the Connecticut River Museum, documents those who continue to keep this fishery alive on the lower Connecticut River.

July 21 The Eagle: America’s Tall Ship (David Whittkower, 2010)

A behind-the-scenes look at one of the most unique US Coast Guard training exercises at sea. Christened in the German Navy and seized as a war prize during World War II, the Eagle today trains over 600 new officer cadets every year. With a call to ‘Sail Stations,’ the action begins as trainees learn to climb rigging that stretches 130 feet above the water, unfurl sails while battling heavy seas, and master rigorous drills focusing on flood control, safety, man overboard, firefighting, damage control, first aid, navigation, line handling and more. The eighty-minute film introduces the exceptional breed of men and women who call the Eagle home. They share their stories of what it’s like to live and learn in an atmosphere where the pace is hectic, the action nonstop, and the dangers ever present.  The film maker will introduce the film and answer questions following the screening.