Deconstructing Old Ads with Bill Sonnett
The 1909 Ideal Minnow
There are very few ads I've come across over the years as interesting as this one. It is from the September 1909 issue of Hunter-Trader-Trapper. I have never seen this ad anywhere else. At first glace it appears to be an ad for the typical "Ideal Minnow" but if you read the description and look closely at the picture there is something very different about this one.
Someone actually came into one of the early Indianapolis shows with a very old tackle box containing a Samuel Friend Frog and this very minnow with red felt fins. As I held this minnow in my hands Bob Bulkly leaned over my shoulder and commented that "some fisherman" had added the sculpted, red felt fins to the bait. I thought he was probably right. Imagine my surprise when I saw this ad sometime later and his chagrin when I shared it with him. I don't think either of us could remember who the person was with the tackle box!
-- Bill Sonnett