wh-harris-seafoodCourtesy Harris Family

Captain Billy Harris’ son Jerry joined the family business, W.H. Harris Seafood, in 1964, but when his dad “wouldn’t pay me enough. I quit him and went back on the water.” Jerry came back a couple years later under a renegotiated financial understanding. Daughter Karen Harris Oertel and her husband Art, the family historian, came aboard in the early 1970s.

grading-crabs-jerry-harriskaren-art-oertel                               Jerry Harris; Karen and Art Oertel, Courtesy Harris Family

Both Harris offspring came up knowing what it meant to depend on the Chesapeake Bay for one’s livelihood.

In a recent conversation, Jerry Harris told me, “I started working with my father. Dad used to crab pot when he first came out of the service and had bought the store down Chester (on Kent Island). When I was little in the…

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