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Five Pound Island
Five Pound Island lies in the middle of the deepest recess of Gloucester’s Inner Harbor, called the Head of the Harbor. It is now buried under the pilings of the State Pier which in 1937 was built out from the shore and over the island to provide modern scale dockage and freezer facilities for the fishing fleet.
In colonial days it was an undistinguished rock with very little vegetation that was likely named for the five sheep pounds (pens) holding rams on it, functioning as a smaller version of Ten Pound Island farther out in the harbor. In Lane’s time it had a few wharves and fishing shacks on it, but being disconnected from land it was not a very practical business location.
The island is shown in numerous Lane paintings, perhaps most prominently inwhere it lies at the center of the stage set of the Inner Harbor which Lane has ringed with activity both onshore and off.
44 x 34 in.
Henry Francis Walling, Map of the Towns of Gloucester and Rockport, Essex Co. Massachusetts. Philadelphia, A. Kollner, 1851
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive
"Map of the Towns of Gloucester and Rockport, Massachusetts. H.F. Walling, Civil Engineer. John Hanson, Printer. 1851. Population of Gloucester in 1850 7,805. Population of Rockport in 1850 3,213."