The original Old Salt, meaning “old sailor,” was a guest house on J Street in Hampton Beach. In 1976 the guesthouse was purchased and named by Nancy Higgins, who with her family had spent many summers in Hampton. Nancy had decided to settle here permanently. Later, in 1986 a small restaurant known as The Corona House, located at 38 Ocean Blvd was purchased by Nancy and renamed The Old Salt Eating and Drinking Place.
Nancy contracted her two sons, Joe and Mike, who were both working at restaurants in Massachusetts and they came to Hampton Beach to help their mother and family friend, Ken Fair, set up the restaurant. The following year Nancy’s daughter Kathi, upon completion of her degree in Hotel and Restaurant Management, joined the budding family business.