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Broome's Pearls

· Historical Sites,Australia

Broome has a long history with the pearling industry. As their ample supply of pearls brought more and more ships, the town grew.

A great place to learn about this history is the Pearl Lugger tour on Dampier terrace. It's more like a sit-in museum than an actual tour. Once you've grabbed a seat your guide then shows your various equipment and historical items while telling you the history of Broome.

Here are some of the items we learned about:

This glass is what stood the divers face and the elements. It was secured into their helmet at the very end.

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These are the shoes worn by the divers. They had to counter act the buoyancy of their suits.Imagine wearing these beasts. An additional 60kg was strapped around your chest and back.

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This suit was a one size fits all. So divers had to use belts to secure excess material. They would pile on wool underthings and pants before getting in. With assistance, it usually took about an hour to get into.

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Tubes linked the diver and the ship. These machines had to be cranked to provide air to those under water.

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These are some photos of the area at the time.

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Some big items that have been found.

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The last part we were allowed to try some of the pearl meat. It was marinated and served cold.

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Overall it's a great place to spend an hour in the air conditioning and getting educated in history.

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