In 1866 a Princess Anne Attorney, John W. Crisfield was instrumental in bringing the railroad all the way down to the Crisfield seaport. The town was then renamed "Crisfield" honoring the attorney's efforts which proved to bolster the economy of the town. Once the railroad came to Crisfield, seafood was soon being shipped all over the United States and Crisfield became known as the "seafood capital of the world." By 1904, the City of Crisfield was the second largest city in Maryland, after Baltimore. It continues to be famous for its seafood - particularly the Maryland Crab - and it abounds with restaurants, seafood packing houses and seafood distribution companies.
The Crisfield Crabbers were the town's entry in the Eastern Shore Baseball League.
The town has recently seen the construction of condos, however the town still has not seen a population growth. A Strategic Revitilization Plan is underway and the City Sewer line is in the process of being upgraded to accommodate the growing needs as more development takes place.
Crisfield is the southern-most city in Maryland. Though spots on the Western Shore in St. Mary's County are notoriously referred to as southern Maryland, geographically Apes Hole, a section of the Crisfield area, is the southern most point of the State.
There were 1,172 households out of which 30.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 32.9% were married couples living together, 25.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 38.3% were non-families. 34.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 18.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.30 and the average family size was 2.92.
In the city the population was spread out with 27.8% under the age of 18, 8.3% from 18 to 24, 24.5% from 25 to 44, 21.2% from 45 to 64, and 18.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 75.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 71.3 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $17,979, and the median income for a family was $23,929. Males had a median income of $30,078 versus $20,670 for females. The per capita income for the city was $12,387. About 30.5% of families and 34.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 46.8% of those under age 18 and 30.2% of those age 65 or over.
For 20 years, Crisfield has hosted the Scorchy Tawes Pro-Am Fishing Tournament. The 3-day tournament gives cash prizes for different fishing categories. A block-party is held each night of the tournament at Side Street Restaurant.
The biggest event of Crisfield is the Hard Crab Derby & Fair, which happens every Labor Day weekend. Major highlights of the Crab Derby include a parade through Main Street, the Little Miss, Mr and Miss Crustacean Pageants, the Boat Docking Contest, the Crab Picking contest, and the Crab Bowl. The Crab Bowl turns the Somers Cove Marina into fairgrounds with rides, concerts, vendor stands, and fireworks.