St. Michaels in Talbot County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Tools of the Oystermen
Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum
To learn more about Chesapeake Bay oysters and the men who used these tools, visit the exhibition Oystering on the Chesapeake.
A waterman stands on the narrow side deck of his boat, lifting tongs heavy with oysters. Tonging is cold, back-breaking work, but it requires the simplest, least expensive equipment—a boat, a strong fisherman, and a sturdy set of tongs. Robert de Gast, 1969, Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum.
A dredge is towed along the Bay's bottom of from a boat. At drags across an oyster bar, it scrapes
Patent tonging is cold and dangerous, but can reach oysters in very deep waters. Powerful winches lowered and lifted these massive tongs and their catch. Robert de Gast, 1970, Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum.
Erected by Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Animals • Industry & Commerce • Waterways & Vessels. A significant historical year for this entry is 1887.
Location. 38° 47.315′ N, 76° 13.253′ W. Marker is in St. Michaels, Maryland, in Talbot County. Marker can be reached from Mill Street just east of Burns Street, on the left when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 213 North Talbot Street, Saint Michaels MD 21663, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Katie G., Deadrise Workboat (a few steps from this marker); What is a waterman? (a few steps from this marker); Pot Pie Skiff (within shouting distance of this marker); Martha (within shouting distance of this marker); Old Point (within shouting distance of this marker); Winnie Estelle (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Fishing Shanty / Ark (about 300 feet away); Kennedy M. Fitzgerald (about 300 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in St. Michaels.
Credits. This page was last revised on August 26, 2019. It was originally submitted on August 26, 2019, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. This page has been viewed 65 times since then and 13 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on August 26, 2019, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.