Paul Shuman: Innovative net designer revolutionized Northeast trawl fishery

by Joyce Rowley

CHARLESTOWN, RI – The fishing industry lost an important contributor to its history with the unexpected death in March of net designer and innovator Paul Shuman.

Shuman Trawl nets, distinctively made from green poly twine, were a mainstay for New England and Mid- Atlantic fishermen from 1976 on.

“What an impact he had on this industry,” said Fred Mattera, a retired fisherman and safety trainer based in Point Judith. “Somebody said that Paul ‘turned Point Judith green.’ And it was true. We were very successful towing Shuman trawls, so much so that everybody wanted one up and down the coast.”

photo by Judy Tate © Commercial Fisheries News 2013

At left:  The front end oa a net stretched out on the floor at Trawlworks.

photo by Judy Tate © Commercial Fisheries News 2013


At right:  Paul Shuman
photo by Steve Taber © Commercial Fisheries News 2013






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