The Fiji Museum - Virtual Museum

Beche-de-mer curing shed

Captain Eagleston's beche-de-mer curing shed, or batterhouse, in 1840. Each captain contracted a powerful chief who sent a thousand or more divers to gather sea slugs, while hundreds of men cut firewood with which to smoke them. The slugs were gutted and boiled, then dried over a smouldering fire in a long shed. Gathering and curing the sea slugs took months, with several shore stations supplying each ship.

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