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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 49.djvu/555

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535
THE SCALLOP.

patty of oysters in, they have given the name of "scolloped oysters" to the dish, whether served in the shells or otherwise.

The only portion of this handsome bivalve that is edible is the adductor muscle, which closes the shells and corresponds to the "hard part" in the oyster, often miscalled the "eye"; the rest of the animal, being very soft, is called the rim by the fishermen. The little village of New Suffolk, on Great Peconic Bay, which divides the eastern end of Long Island into two long peninsulas, lives mainly from the scallop fisheries, which begin in September and end about the first of May, and are only interfered with by the freezing of the bay or by floating ice, for the hardy fishermen seldom mind the weather unless a gale should interfere

PSM V49 D555 Going it alone.jpg
Going it alone.

with the management of the boats, which are small sloops of five to fifteen tons burden and are managed by two men—one at the tiller and the other at the dredges. They use from one to six dredges, according to the size of the boat. The scallop fleet of New Suffolk comprises twenty-six boats, and some few others of a smaller class occasionally join in the work. About seventy men do the catching and carting, while twenty men, thirty women, and eighty children open and prepare the catch for market; and as the population of the place is only two hundred and seventy-five, it may be truly said that all—grocer, postmaster, and stage driver—live from the catching of scallops. Children stop on the way home from school and open a few quarts, and mothers often rock the cradle with one foot while standing on the other at work in the shops.

Greenport, Sag Harbor, and other places on Long Island do much in this line of work, and tons of scallops come to New York from Rhode Island and other waters east of New York; but the