Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Voices from the Past: Dixie Carroll (1919)

Over the next several months, I’m going to feature the fishing tackle writing of one of my all-time favorite writers, Dixie Carroll (Carroll Blaine Cook). These famed pieces of tackle were featured in his great book Fishing Tackle and Kits. They are fascinating write-ups of the tackle from a contemporary perspective. Below is Dixie’s write up on the Jamison Fly Rod Wiggler, one of the earliest true fly rod lures.

HEDDON's DOWAGIAC CASTING RODS.- Made by James Heddon's Sons, Dowagiac, Mich. The Heddon's split-bamboo bait-casting rod is a mighty fine one and made right all the way through and at the same time you can get it in price from four dollars up to twenty-five and a good rod that does not stagger your bank roll. Even from the lowest priced ones up you get a good rod and the topnotcher is a winner. I have used these rods from the old one piecer up to the No. 15 and they all work well. The bamboo is selected, the ferrules of German sil- ver, shouldered, hand welt and satin finish while the guides are agate and hardened steel. The construction of these rods is on the one-piece demountable style and that gives you a long tip and short butt; this style allows free whip to the tip giving the bam- boo a chance to bend with all its natural resiliency, throwing the bait with practically no strain on the wrist or arm. They are full of action, yet strong and sturdy and a tool that you can handle with pride on any lake or stream. They look and act the part of a thorobred. The fact that the ferrule is set well below the center of the rod, down towards the butt eliminates the chance of breakage at the ferrule as the bend of the rod centers well above the ferrule. Care in selection of bamboo, thoroughly seasoned, and then care and skill in manufacture as well as the Heddon name behind the rod as a guarantee for workmanship and material means that the Heddon rods are right in every way.

1910 Heddon rod ad.

A Heddon baitcasting rod ca. 1920.

The “Hoosier Queen" by Heddon.

A 1921 Heddon rod ad.

— Dr. Todd

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