The Revolutionary War wasn’t the only war that shaped early America. A war against the environment began hundreds of years earlier.
While the passenger pigeon was hunted to extinction on land, sailors slaughtered the biggest animals that ever lived at sea.
There were more than 300 whaling ships in New England in 1770, shortly before the Revolutionary War began. By 1856, there were over 300 ships based in New Bedford, Connecticut alone. One of the whalers’ favorite targets was the mighty sperm whale, the largest of the toothed whales. Today, the sperm whale is Connecticut’s state animal.
State Mammals Home