March1909 National Sportsman cover. Photo Bill Sonnett.

I was originally drawn to this March 1909 National Sportsman magazine by the cover.  One does not often see a leaping bass on the front of a 115-year-old magazine.  But alas, it still has a fly in its mouth, not a plug.

My first surprise upon opening the magazine was that the opening article was about a canoe camping and fishing trip taken in the immediate local of my home in southern Michigan.  It seemed a bit strange, reading about long portages and tent camping on the shores of lakes that are now wall-to-wall cottages and where the sound of “Jet Skis” seems to be ever-present.

There were no remarkable ads in the magazine but there was a write-up on the new and ever-more popular sport of “Baitcasting” that touched me.  Read this short write-up and I think you will agree that the writer understood that the fun of baitcasting is as much in the act of casting to a particular spot as catching the bass that was laying just where you thought he might be.

A small blurb on Baitcasting from the march 1909 issue of National Sportsman.

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