The History of the Sewansecott Oyster

Sewansecott oysters have a long history of excellence in the local area. In case you haven’t heard of them, Sewansecott oysters are oysters that grow in cages in Hog Island Bay, Virginia. Full-body-flavored with a hint of savory flavor and a lingering sweet touch to balance out the heavy brine, these oysters are farmed by the century-old, 4th-generation oyster family H.M. Terry from Willis Wharf, VA. Sewansecott oysters feature an extremely briny flavor, which they get from the pure, pollution-free seawater of the state’s eastern shore of Virginia. This tucked-away area is located just inside Hog Island.

One hundred years ago, Henry Miller Terry was sent overboard during a storm by his dad to cut the oyster nets away from the ship’s sides. Pulled up bloodied with clothing in tatters by the sharp shells, Terry decided to branch out and sail his own course, and thus struck out on his own. He ended up on Willis Wharf on Virginia’s eastern shore, where he established H.M. Terry Co. in 1903.

A Long-Standing Commitment to Quality

Today, H.M. Terry Co., Inc. continues its legacy in its 4th generation of farming shellfish, built on a foundation of tradition, unwavering dedication, and cutting-edge research with partners at the Virginia Institute of Marine Science. Their shellfish still flourish in the waters of Hog Island Bay, protected by the barrier islands of the Virginia Coast Reserve. The oysters harvested from this area are meaty and briny with a bit of cream, all nestled in unique shells streaked with pink or purple.

H.M. Terry raises more than 40 million Sewansecott salt oysters and clams annually from native Virginia brood stock. They are nurtured and protected by a 6 ½-foot tidal flow filled with nutrient-rich, pollutant-free waters.

Hog Island Bay sits within an 80-mile chain of undeveloped barrier islands, used almost exclusively for oyster and clam grow-out, and protected under the United Nations Biosphere Reserve. We stand behind our sustainable harvesting methods that result in the highest quality shellfish all year round while showcasing our dedication to ecological preservation. Known for our high standards of quality and our delivery of fresh Sewansecott oysters, our seafood is synonymous with freshness, taste and quality.

To this day, H.M. Terry Co. still offers these premium oysters and clams, putting the finishing touches on countless celebrations, cookouts, dinners, gatherings, holidays and more for customers all around the area.

Contact HM Terry Co. For Fresh Sewansecott Oysters

H.M. Terry Co. offers the best seaside clams the state has to offer with our Sewansecott brand clams available in two grades: Little Necks and Middle Necks. Looking to order some Sewansecott oysters for your next barbecue, outing, or just because? Call us anytime to order at 757-442-7006.