In 1622 Governor William Bradford of the Plymouth Plantation apologized to a new arrival of settlers that the only dish he "could presente their friends with was a lobster...without bread or anyhting else but a cupp of fair water." Lobsters in those days grew to a tremendous size, sometimes forty or more pounds...
The taste for lobster developed rapidly in the nineteenth century, and commercial fisheries specializing in the crustacean were begun in Maine in the 1840s, thereby giving rise to the fame of the "Maine lobster," which was being shipped around the world a decade later.
They know this from excavating "middens," deposits of shells and bones left by early civilizations.
Anne Wilson [Academy Chicago: Chicago] 1991 "Lobster, much as today, was considered especially elegant and appropriate food for lovers, being an aphrodesiac.
There is a common perception that lobster was considered a poor man's food, and this many have been in the case in colonial New England but not back in Europe.
After being simmered in a brine of water and Bay salt in a fish kettle, lobsters could either be eaten immediately, or kept as long as a quarter of a year, wrapped in brine-soaked rags and buried deep in sand." (p.
55) ---Food and Drink in Britain: From the Stone Age to the 19th Century, C.