Feeding blubber to the boilers
Whales and Whaling pictures
The blubber that was stripped from a whale was used for the fat it contained. To obtain this fat it needed to be boiled to break down the tissue and fat cells. After flensing, the blubber is cut up into smaller and smaller pieces, in the first picture a piece is about to be passed below decks through a hole to make the whole process more efficient. The men who do this job were called the "blubber boys". A whalers "blubber hook" can also be seen here, almost as useful as a third hand.
First of all the blubber will be further sliced by rotating knives and then it will pass into the cookers. This kind of direct processing made the factory ship with its continual operation much efficient than the old style whaling ships with their batch processing of one whale at a time which was also far more dependent on manipulation of the blubber by the whalers.