In 2004, as I was walking back to the boat and the Crazy Crab for dessert, I noticed something. There were cats on the roof of the Reedville Steamship Wharf which is the white building with the flat roof in the last two pictures.
Fondest memory: I tried to get pictures of the kittens, but they were too fast for me, and the best I was able to do was the little tail of the kitten sticking up on the right. The other two cats pictured are adult cats that were up there with the kittens.
The fortunes of Reedville rose and fell with the menhaden industry. In the 1850s, menhaden made millionaires of Reedville captains. With the gradual decline of the industry, there is only one menhaden plant remaining in Reedville. The boats no longer hire spotters to go up in planes to find the schools of menhaden.
But while the industry has declined, there is still a market for menhaden oil (which is used to make many products from animal feed to cosmetics to paint). Menhaden oil is the only marine source of Omega-3 recognized by the U.S. government as a generally safe ingredient in human food. Food manufacturers use menhaden oils in margarines, soups, salad dressings.
Reedville has other strings to its bow - it is now a charter fishing center with more than 50 boats operating out of the area. And it is on an official Virginia scenic byway, the Northumberland Heritage Trail, which starts from the Reedville Historic District to the Heathsville Historic District, follows back roads along the Potomac and its tributaries.
There is also a regularly scheduled boat from Reedvile over to Tangier Island.