Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Voices from the Past: Dixie Carroll on the Shannon Twin Spinner

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.

SHANNON TWIN SPINNER.- Made by the W. J. Jamison Co., 736 South California Avenue, Chicago, Ill. I take off my hat to the Shannon Twin Spinner, it is certainly a winner. On sight, the experienced fisherman will at once see its practicability and get it for his tackle box. The spoons are small and are attached onto swivels at the ends of piano wires which bend up from the eye of the hook, and the big winning point for the bait is that the spoons do their flashing spinning right above the point of the hook. Often a bass will strike at the spoons and on many lures the distance of the spoon from the hook makes it possible for many of the fish to be lost through not hooking them. Not so with the Shannon, the game fish that strikes the spoon strikes the hooks at the same time. This spinner comes either with a red fly or plain with a weight for keeping the bait right side up. The idea of putting the spoons above the hook was doped up by Jesse P. Shannon, a fisherman than whom there is no better, and a thoroughly practical fellow. I found this spinner entirely weedless, the wires upon which the spoons are swiveled and the whirling spoons them- selves acting as weed-guards, and the bait comes out of the thickest weeds without a trailing bunch of bait-hiding weeds. The bait without the fly makes a fine lure used with the frog, pork-rind or minnow and is just right for casting, while the weighted fly makes a small-mouth bait that gets the fish. I find that the spoons spin very well when the bait is reeled in slowly and also in trolling, they still wiggle around and shoot their flashes even at the slow speed of that style of fishing. Taking the bait all around, it is certainly right in every way, material, workmanship and the big point remains that it is a fish t~ getter and I feel sure the fellow who uses it will never be without it.

— Dr. Todd

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