Called Beautiful Swimmers, the Chesapeake blue crab (scientific name Callinectes sapidus translates to beautiful swimmer) has been in this vast body of water for centuries. John Smith wrote these words in 1608 speaking of what is now the Chesapeake Bay, “a great arm of the sea that thrusts nearly two hundred miles deep into the fertile lowlands” of what is now Maryland and Virginia.
Later when history described the bay it was written, “Home to diamondback terrapins, egrets, striped bass, menhaden, shad, bluefish, croaker, the world’s largest natural bed of oysters and also home to Callinectes sapidus, the savory beautiful swimmer, the fastest swimming of crabs and one of the world’s most succulent.”
As early as the 1600s the blue crab was an important food for native Americans and European settlers in the bay area. Though not as popular as fish, by the 1700s the crab had gained regional popularity. Advances in refrigeration techniques in the...
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