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Finding Treasures:

Restoring the Old

Clam HousE

The video to the right gives you a quick overview of our restoration project. It was quite an undertaking! 


When we began this “labor of love”, we had no idea what we would find. Of course, we had hoped to find hidden treasure somewhere inside, but only found a few soda bottles. The treasures appeared later in a very different way. 


Curious folks would drop by to ask what was going on. When I let them know that we were restoring the building, most were grateful and excited. The community was happy to be getting rid of this dilapidated eye-sore. 

Many of the visitors had stories to tell about family members who worked for Elmer Willis, “The Clam King”. Others, who dropped by, were folks who had actually worked here. Charles Manly Willis, who used to help manage Willis Brother’s Seafood, was one of them. He was kind enough to help me locate two old wells on the property.  Even today I still get visitors and stories.  And there-in lies the treasure. 

Despite two hurricanes and a pandemic, we are happy to report that we have an intact building with a finished roof - and are producing millions of oyster seed each season. 


If you have a story to share or want to tour our oyster nursery, please drop by for a visit. We are there most days working in the nursery and reliving history with members of our community. 


Robert Hill, co-founder of Down East Mariculture
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