What we’re gearing up for here is something truly historical when it comes to competitive bass fishing history. A reader by the name of Jeff Haines, who collects all things related to bass fishing patches, has agreed to allow us to post his entire Bassmaster Tournament patch collection. Because of that, Bassmaster Patches – The Gallery is going to become a reality.
But let me first set the stage how this happened.
About a month or so ago, Jeff commented on my post, Bass Masters Classic Patches. In that comment, Jeff mentioned he had an extra 1972 Classic patch and that he’d be willing to let it go. We talked on the phone, made the deal and low-and-behold, my collection is getting closer to complete. But also in that original comment, Jeff mentioned he had a nearly complete set of all Bassmaster tournament patches. That got my attention and since then we’ve been talking a lot about him sharing his collection here. Well, today marks the first step in that journey.
In talking with Jeff, he told me how he’s acquired these prized collectors’ items. It’s a cool story and here’s how he came to obtain them.
“It all started on eBay about a dozen years ago,” Jeff said. There was a guy who’d found about 200 patches in a garbage bag in the attic of a house he’d bought in California. He was posting them on eBay and another guy was buying three a week from him. By the time I got to him, he only had 57 of them left. I bought them all. Unfortunately, he’d sold all the really old ones first. But it gave me a good start.”
Jeff got lucky again when he spotted another auction on eBay
“A former employee of B.A.S.S., who worked at the time when ESPN took over the organization, saved a bunch of patches from going in the dumpster. ESPN was dumping all the old memorabilia to get ready for the move to Florida. She saved the patches and posted them on eBay.
“I contacted her and asked what the price would be if I bought them all. Her response was too high, I thought, and I let it go. She took the listing off eBay but then later relisted them and I ended up buying the whole lot. That got me a lot further in the collection. Since then, I’ve just been buying off eBay and sometimes people contact me by word of mouth.
“At this point, I think I’m only missing about a couple dozen patches, not counting the Federation patches. I’ve been collecting these patches now for around 12 years and I’m close to having them all.”
What drew Jeff to the patches in the first place, I asked.
“I’ve been bass fishing since I got out of high school, but I’ve been fishing all my life. I’m a life member of B.A.S.S. and I like the history. I got interested in the patches because every patch for every tournament was different. They’re all unique designs – no duplicates.”
Jeff isn’t just a collector, he’s also fished the Top 150s and Opens.
“I started fishing the Top 150s and then the Opens in 2001. When they got rid of the amateur anglers, it bothered me, but in 2017 I decided to sign up as a marshall. I’ve marshalled 14 events as well as five of the events in Texas that required the marshalls to also be a judge. It’s been a great experience because you feel part of the event.”
So far, Jeff has fished with four Classic champs, Skeet Reese, Jason Christie, Jordan Lee, and Rick Clunn.
Now more about Jeff’s patches on the Bass Fishing Archives
Jeff has photographed his collection from 1967 through 1978. You’ve probably already noticed some of his collection in the posts:
- The BASS Champs 1977
- Season at a Glance: 1978 Bassmaster Tail Part One
- Season at a Glance: 1978 Bassmaster Trail Part Two
What we’ll be doing for all future Bassmaster Trail articles is include Jeff’s Bassmaster Tournament patches with each tournament report. But we’re not going to stop there. We’re starting a gallery to showcase Jeff’s collection that you’ll find up in the main menu. Just go to Galleries and click on Bassmaster Tournament Patches. From there you can pick a year and see all the Bassmaster patches for that year’s events – minus the ones he’s missing.
This also means that I’m going to have to dig out all my 1960s Bassmaster Magazines and write tournament reports for all events from 1967 through 1969, which I have neglected to do. I’ll also be going back to past Season at a Glance articles and inserting the patches for years 1970 through 1977.
I’d really like to thank Jeff for sharing his collection with us all. It’s always been a dream of mine for the Bass Fishing Archives to become THE PLACE where all bass fishing history can be found and enjoyed by all. This just shows that the dream is getting closer to reality. Thank YOU, Jeff, for helping with the dream.
Now, let’s see if we can help Jeff.
Jeff is missing 23 patches out of nearly 500 to close out his collection. The patches he’s missing are:
- 1968: Seminole Lunker Lake Seminole, GA
- 1969: Seminole Lunker Lake Seminole, GA
- 1969: Eufaula Invitational Lake Eufaula, AL
- 1969: All-American Lake Ouachita, AR
- 1970: Oklahoma National Lake Eufaula, OK
- 1973: Bassmaster Classic Clarks Hill, SC Press Angler Patch
- 1975: Bass Master Classic Currituck Sound, NC Press Angler Patch
- 1976: Bassmaster Classic Lake Guntersville, AL Contestant Patch
- 1977: BASS Champs Percy Priest, TN Press Angler Patch
- 1977: Bass Masters Classic Kissimmee Chain of Lakes, FL Contestant Patch
- 1979: Florida Invitational St Johns River, FL
- 1979: Bass Masters Classic Lake Texoma, TX Contestant Patch
- 1981: Bass Masters Classic Alabama River, AL Small Patch
- 1981: BASS Champs Cherokee Lake, TN Contestant Patch and Press Angler Patch
- 1982 BASS Champs Ohio River, OH Contestant Patch and Press Angler Patch
- 1994: Georgia Top 100 Lake Seminole, GA
- 1997: Maryland Top 100 Potomac River, MD
- 1999: California Invitational California Delta, CA
- 1999: Michigan Top 150 Lake St. Claire, MI
- 1999: Bassmaster Classic Louisiana Delta, LA
- 2000: Alabama Top 150 Lake Wheeler, AL
- 2000: Florida Top 150 Kissimmee Chain of Lakes, FL
- 2001: Bassmaster Classic Louisiana Delta, LA
If anyone out there knows of any of these patches and they’re for sale or barter, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a comment below. It’d be really awesome if we could return the favor to Jeff for sharing his collection with us.
Also, if there is anyone out there who would like to share their collection of bass fishing memorabilia, please contact us. We’re looking for anything from old magazines, tackle catalogs, boat catalogs, you name it. If it has something to do with bass fishing, we’d love to have it here on the Bass Fishing Archives.