The following article on the origins of the Wooden Minnow appeared in my book Pflueger Profiles. I had found it in a 1924 edition of the League of Ohio Sportsman magazine, but wondered where the original had come from. Wonder no more. The original article was published in the May 1918 Hardware Review magazine, in response to Stimson's article in the American Angler on the same subject.
THE ORIGIN AND EVOLUTION OF THE WOODEN MINNOW
By E. A. Pflueger, Enterprise Mfg. Co.
As there seems to be some agitation on at the present time on the part of sporting writers in showing up relics of the past in the fishing tackle line, especially as regards wood minnows or plug baits, the Enterprise Mfg. Company has prepared the following for the enlightenment of all interested in this subject.
We made our first plug bait in the year 1881 in the form of a hollow glass minnow, mounted with single and treble hooks at tail and spinner at head. This was heavy enough to cast properly and the minnow being filled with a mirror substance also our "Luminous" material, made it very attractive and a good seller.
Following the Glass Minnow, we made other casting baits, all of which could be termed plug baits in the following order: Rubber Minnows, Phantom Minnows, Devon Minnows, Pearl Minnows, Metal Minnows. In the year 1883 we put out the Comstock Wood Minnow, the body being made of wood with glass eyes and spinners mounted upon the side instead of at the head and tail, according to prudent methods.
In the year 1898 we were the first to place on the market a wood minnow of the present day structure, and have been continuously manufacturing wood minnows and other forms of wooden baits ever since.
Our variety of baits and fishing tackle general to-day is by far the largest in volume and number turned out by any factory in the United States.
The best thing about the original was the two accompanying images--one I'd seen before (of the three Pflueger lures) but I'd not seen this version of the newspaper ad.
-- Dr. Todd