Home Today Is Originally, Clam Strips Could Only Be Bought At Howard Johnson’s

Originally, Clam Strips Could Only Be Bought At Howard Johnson’s

clam day

Updated May 4, 2024

(Oct. 31, 2017) Fried claims have been on menus since the 1840s alongside mutton, liver and veal cutlets in restaurants up and down the Eastern Seaboard. Now, on November 1, we observe National Deep Fried Clams Day.

According to legend, Lawrence Henry “Chubby” Woodman from Essex, Massachusetts deep fried the first breaded versions of clams over 100 years ago. On July 3, 1916, in his small roadside restaurant, now Woodman’s of Essex, it is believed Chubby served his customers the first modern-day deep-fried clams.

It was later on that Thomas Soffron of Soffron Brothers Clam Co., based in Ipswich, Massachusetts, created clam strips, which are made from the foot of hard-shelled sea clams.  Soffron sold these to Howard Johnson’s in an exclusive deal, and as the chain expanded, they became popular throughout the country.

Faith Based Events

Clams are low in cholesterol and fat without breading and oil.  However, when fried, they absorb cooking fat and calories.

A clam has only two goals in life: to eat and to have sex, hence the phrase “happy as a clam”.  Unfortunately, as the clam has no brain, it derives no real pleasure from either food or sex. The clam is a chemically driven shell full of salty flesh that exists to procreate.

  • 1840s – Restaurant menus introduce clams for the first time.
  • Mid-1900s – Fried clams were introduced during the mid-1900s. Lawrence Henry “Chubby” Woodman has been credited with the invention of the version we know today.
  • 1916 – Woodman served up the delicious meal at his roadside stand. Plying his trade in Essex, Massachusetts, he was renowned for making chips by deep-frying potatoes before making the switch to deep-frying clams from the Essex River.
  • 1939 – Maine State Rep. Cleveland Sleeper, tried to pass a law making it illegal to put tomatoes in clam chowder. The bill never went for a vote.
  • 1976 – The creator of deep-fried clams, Chubby Woodman, dies.
  • 2007 – scientists discovered a specimen of the ocean quahog that was between 405 and 410 years old.
  • 2015 – National Deep Fried Clams Day is declared to take place on July 3 annually.
  • It takes about 25 to 28 months for clam larvae to reach a market-size clam.
  • Clams feed year-round, though they feed less in winter because they need less energy.
  • A clam that is 2 to 3 inches is more and likely three to five years old.
  • A normal clam can live till it is about 33 to 36 years old.
  • Clams have no eyes, ears, or noses, so they cannot see, hear or smell
  • A giant clam can grow up to four feet.
  • There are many types of regional clam chowder recipes: Manhattan Clam Chowder, New England Clam Chowder, Rhode Island Clam Chowder, San Francisco New England Clam Chowder.
  • One in 5,000 clams forms a pearl.


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