Monday, October 31, 2011

News of the Week: 31 October 2011

Don't have time to read 50+ fishing and tackle collecting blogs and web sites? Well, let us do it for you! Follow all of the latest news, articles, and stories on our Whitefishpress Twitter account! Hint: You don't need to be a member...just bookmark the Twitter Feed Page or click on latest links to the right!

80 years of the Dick Nite spoon…the Alabama rig is the new rage…Long Beach tackle shop closes…salmon fishing closes for the year on the Isle of Man…Rapala's financial year…NFLCC show in Arkansas….tarpon heaven…wine, food, and fly fishing…fly fishing helps heal breast cancer survivors…wounded warriors…it must be THE NEWS OF THE WEEK!

The Big Lead: Celebrating 80 years of the Dick Nite salmon spoon.

The Alabama Rig is taking the bass world by storm.

The end of a Long Beach tackle shop brings out the customers.

The final day of the salmon season on the Isle of Man is here.

Rapala's financial reporting.

Wounded warriors benefit from charity fishing.

The future of an Ormond Beach bait shop is in doubt.

Fly fishing a fine tonic for breast cancer survivors.

Scottish fly angler lands gold medal.

Bob Rock of Oswego still tying flies at 85.

Former Thomas & Thomas employee retires from her job as Yellowstone librarian.

Wine, food, and fly fishing.

Entering tarpon heaven.

Finishing with a Flourish: Jerry McCoy--longtime NFLCC auctioneer--hosts the annual NFLCC show in Arkansas.

-- Dr. Todd

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Deconstructing Old Ads: The Paw Paw Pike Caster (1938)

The Paw Paw Pike Caster

From the April 1938 issue of Outdoor Life comes this ad for the Paw Paw Pike Caster. Many years ago I found one of these baits and was very impressed by its actual resemblance to a small Northern Pike or Chain Pickerel and its beautiful paint job. This is the only ad that I have run across for this striking bait. I contacted my friend Henry Norris, who has the best Paw Paw Caster collection that I know of, to find out a bit more about this striking bait. I was surprised to learn that it came is several different colors as I had only seen ones with the color pattern shown in this ad. I was also surprised to find out that it came in two sizes and in both jointed and straight models (I guess I should have read the ad more carefully). Henry was kind enough to send along several pictures of a few of his Pike Casters. I have been going to NFLCC Lure Shows since 1985 and there are more Pike Casters in these photos than I have seen in all that time. Enjoy!

-- Bill Sonnett

Friday, October 28, 2011

The Friday Funhouse

The Fishing Video of the Week

Don't forget to check out the Fishing For History Fishing Video Tumblr Archive where all the videos we've ever posted are stored!

A great history of the man behind the bottle cap lure.

12 Things I Would Buy If Only i Could Afford Them

Well shiver me timbers is this a strange old reel!

Good God is this Vom Hofe tackle box amazing!

This 740 Punkinseed is going nuts.

Not one but two Otto Zwarg Brooklyn fly reels? Amazing.

Your Winchester Bait of the Week is this #9200 in the box.

Master Angler Award pins from Ohio are pretty darn neat.

An H.L. Leonard Model 41H is a great, great fly rod.

A Flood Minnow in the box is a great find.

This J.T. Buel No. 2 is one old blade.

An Ari T. Hart Gallatin is a superfine fly reel.

This is a rather nice Hastings Frog in the box.

A Zink Screwtail is a superb lure.

As always, have a safe Halloween weekend, and be good to each other--and yourself.

-- Dr. Todd

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Ben Wright's Spinning Reel Report (October 2011)

Ben Wright's Spinning Reel Report (October 2011)

SOME TRICKS----------------------SOME TREATS !!!
A Herters Professional model 940 NIB. per seller these were handmade and individually fitted (ya Right)!
they were made in JAPAN, it sold @ 47.66
A swiss Record third version E-WB with a Buy-it-Now @ approx 303.00 NO BIDS
An Olympic model 82 E+WB starting @ 175.00 NO BIDS
another model 82 E+WB sold @ 151.21 wow
and how about an OTCO Slip Cast EXC with a buy-it-now @499.99 per seller-searched on line a very rare reel and hard to come by-say what!!! no Bids
A Zebco Zero Hour Bomb Co. CF exc- per Dick Braun That-Zebco-Guy was a hand balanced very early reel only about 5 known ! sold @ 203.17
A Feurer Bro's Spinster model FB 417 NIB early transition reel from Airex black color that sold @ 144.70
and a rare Hardy Sea Altex NMWB that sold @789.95
333 first version exc+ @ 279.09 wow
A 999 3 speed exc+wb @715.00
3 tan/black third version exc @ 218.28
4 tan/black third version nib @ 223.50
7 first version Champagne e+wb @ 271.24
753 ewb @ 53.00
GS90 (not 65-90 per seller) nib @ 153.50
GS9 like new @ 113.50
mini-mate gold series exc @ 54.77
Dam Quick:
110N nib @ 167.50
Condor mpu exc- @ 746.63
Mepps Super Meca orange ewb @ 169.99
FSR exc @ 75.06
Canadian paint wear @690.98 wow
Cargem 33 exc @ 92.90
Alcedo 2C/S w/non factory MPU nib @ 96.00
MItchell/Garcia Mitchell
204 nib @ 82.98
308 Benjamin Albatros ewb box? @86.00 RNM
300DL w/St. Croix presentation rod, reel ewb @ 898.88
Cap 304 nib @ 77.00
524 exc- @ 109.95
508 w/matching rod exc- @ 326.10
NOTE: correction on last months report-- listed as a model
509w/rod should have read 508-- thanks Wallace
 a neat set of serveral mitchell repair tools w/box @152.50
and a mitchell copy from Japan was an International 100 1/2 bail exc- @ 69.33
716Z nib @ 233.49 wow
712Z nib @ 167.50
8500 SS nib @ 88.00
Zebco Cardinal:
4 6th version nib @ 260.00
Other Reels:
Jamison Jublee 50 nib Buy-Now @75.00 sold @ 44.60RNM
Swiss Blasi Blue Flash exc- @ 92.26
Taggart no 10 e-wb @ 102.50
Fin-Nor #3 exc @ 224.25
last was an Australian Cedar Sea Martin exc starting @ approx 2400.00 NO Bids!
guess its time to get the snow blower out-- did I say SNOW? 

-- Ben Wright

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

52 Trade Houses Part 30: Weeks-Howe-Emerson Company of San Francisco

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Over the course of the next year, we'll be detailing the history of 52 companies that sold branded fishing tackle. 52 trade houses in 52 weeks -- some obscure, some famous, and all available exclusively here on the Fishing for History Blog! If you have any items from the week's entry you'd like to share with us, please send it my way and I'll make sure it makes it on the blog.

For a discussion of what exactly trade tackle is, Click Here. Enjoy the 52 for 52!

o - o - o - o - o - o - o - o - o - o - o - o - o - o

Trade House Tackle, Part 30:

The Fishing Tackle of Weeks-Howe-Emerson Company

Sometimes the mail brings great surprises. My East Coast Surf Reel collecting friend Bill Hoerter recently sent me a little piece of ephemera in the mail as a gift, and it started me on a hunt to track down the history of the interesting tackle trade house that produced it.

The company turned out to be a really interesting West Coast tackle form that gets almost no respect: San Francisco's Weeks-Howe-Emerson Co. of 90 Market Street, the sellers of "WHECO" brand fishing tackle.

The early history of the company is a bit obscure but a 1961 issue of the Marine Digest referred to the firm as "the 105-year old ship chandlery firm of Weeks-Howe-Emerson." This would mean the firm was founded in 1856, making it one of the very few pre-Civil War firms still around today in the same business. Another source, a 1943 issue of The Log, declared the firm was founded 1893. Of the two, it is likely the second date is correct, although it is possible the firm absorbed another company at some point founded in 1860 and retroactively pre-dated their company founding to this earlier year (much like Pflueger did when it used 1864--the year of the founding of American Needle & Fish Hook, a company that it purchased--instead of the proper date of 1881). Regardless of its actually founding, by the 1940s the company was using the 1856 date in its letterhead and logo (see below).

Two of the major figures in the company's history were Charles K. Howe (1875-1961) and Samuel Weeks (d. 1947). Felton W. Howe was also associated with the firm and is believed to be Charles K.'s son.

The company was around at least as early as 1909, and was a very prominent exhibitor at the Panama-Pacific International Exhibition in San Francisco in 1915. There is a rare photo of the outdoor display put on by W-H-E that includes a very early Old Town Canoe made in Maine.

W-H-E was a major wholesaler of all kinds of commercial fishing tackle, but also carried sport fishing tackle as well. They had a lucrative contract in the 1930s to supply the U.S. Navy with manilla rope manufactured in the Philippines.

They were apparently very successful. After World War II they had moved to 255 Mission Street and still were a major wholesaler of fishing tackle. At various times they were official dealers of Caille outboard motors, Old Town Canoes, and Evinrude. They sold branded tackle under the WHECO name but it was mainly terminal tackle, ranging from line spools to hook packets.

1940s view of the firm.

1950s post card of the firm.

The company was one of the largest producer of California tide books; Shipping Register noted in 1929 that the company gave away 12,000 copies of its 1929 tide book that year. Here is the 1958 tide table Bill sent me:

In the back the firm noted it was "fishing tackle to the trade only" and represented the following lines: Ocean City, Langley, Mustad, Harnell, South Bend, Heddon, Pflueger, Penn, Hodgman, Zebco, Johnson, Sunset Line & Twine, Ashaway, Rainbeau, Conolon, Great Lakes and Glen L. Evan.

Clearly they were a major purveyor of fishing tackle.

Charles K. Howe's passing in 1961 caused Pacific Fisherman to note that W-H-E was a "pioneer San Francisco ship chandlery and marine supply firm." It sold a ton of tackle and owners of WHECO trade pieces are lucky indeed.

-- Dr. Todd

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Voices from the Past: Henry Abbott (1919)

Henry Abbott was a charming writer who penned a very overlooked fishing book called "Fish Stories" in 1919. I always loved the introduction he had for this book, which is reprinted below as an example of how one can hook a reader (pun intended) in a few short paragraphs.

An alleged humorist once proposed the query, "are all fisherman liars, or do only liars go fishing?" This does not seem to me to be funny. It is doubtless true that a cynical attitude of suspicion and doubt is often exhibited on the recital of a fishing exploit. I believe the joke editors of magazines and newspapers are responsible for the spread of the propaganda of ridicule, skepticism and distrust of all fish yarns, regardless of their source. The same fellows have a day of reckoning ahead, for the circulation of that ancient but still overworked mother-in-law joke.

It is quite possible that some amateur fishermen, wishing to pose as experts, are guilty of expanding the size or number of their catch, upon reporting the same. But I cannot conceive of a motive sufficient to induce one skilled in handling the rod to lie about his fish. The truth always sounds better and in the case of a fish story, truth is often stranger than any fish fiction.

In my own experience and observation I have found that the more improbable a fish story sounds the more likely it is to be true. The incredulous attitude of the average auditor, also, is discouraging, and often reacts against himself, as thus some of the very best fish stories are never told. To me, it seems a pity that through these Huns of history many charming and instructive tales of adventure should be lost to literature and to the unoffending part of the public.

The fellows whose exploits are here set down, seldom mention their fishing experiences. They are not boastful, and never exaggerate. They do not speak our language. I have, therefore, undertaken to tell their fish stories for them.

-- Dr. Todd

Monday, October 24, 2011

News of the Week: 24 October 2011

Don't have time to read 50+ fishing and tackle collecting blogs and web sites? Well, let us do it for you! Follow all of the latest news, articles, and stories on our Whitefishpress Twitter account! Hint: You don't need to be a member...just bookmark the Twitter Feed Page or click on latest links to the right!

Fort Wayne show gets great press...19 year old drift guide...All Blacks Rugby hero called to duty from fishing a florida pier...paddlefish debate in South at Ramapo College...father and son on the Outer Banks...angler dies from lightning strike...teach a kid to fish...striper record must be THE NEWS OF THE WEEK!

The Big Lead: Fort Wayne show gets some great press. Nice job folks!

Antique fishing lures on display:

19-year old drift guide is open for business.

Flat fish on the fly.

All Blacks rugby world championship game hero was called back to the New Zealand national team…from fishing.

In South Dakota, a paddlefish proposal is being debated.

Fishing a Florida pier.

Man brings love of fishing to Ramapo College.

Father-Son on the Outer Banks.

Florida angler dies while fishing in tragic lightning strike .

Teach a kid to fish!

Man has $1200 worth of tackle stolen; still goes fishing.

Fried Pickles and 25 pounds of renewed faith.

Finishing With a Flourish: Striper record officially moves away from Atlantic City.

-- Dr. Todd