Fishing, has been carried out in Peterhead since the early 16th century. In the early 1800s the men fished in open sail boats, there was no shelter for the crews. They were launched from the shore and hauled back again at night. As the men would be out fishing all day the women carried the men on their backs out to the boats so that they would be kept dry. If a man had to work all day in wet boots and clothes he would get arthritis and not be able to work.

During the 19th century the whaling was the main fishing industry, but in the mid 1800s the herring fishing started to pick up and by the turn of the century, when the whaling was fished out the herring fishing came into its own. In this time the boats had grown larger and aquired decks which were much safer. By 1900 the steam drifter had come along and with this added power they could fish further afield. By the twenties it was the turn of the Motor boat and today Peterhead is the largest white fish Port in Europe.