Fun Fact: Did You Know that Oyster Shells Formed New Land in Somerset County?

Question: Did you know that oyster shells formed new land in Somerset County?

It’s true! The Chesapeake Bay’s incredible wealth of seafood had long dictated the character of Crisfield, a city in Somerset County. Early Native Americans collected the abundant oysters with wooden tongs and dried their catch to use in trade with inland tribes. The white settlers gradually built up a network of fishing shacks and piers over the waters of Somers Cove, as the fishing community was then known. Centuries of dumping oyster shells in the marsh caused new land to form. The J. Millard Tawes Museum, down near the present day docks, has a glass plate set in the floor to reveal these oyster shell underpinnings.


Do you have a fun fact to share about your county? If so, please send it to Kaley Schultze to be featured in MACo’s weekly Fun Fact on Conduit Street.