History of Fishing Lures.

Fishing is one of the most relaxing, yet highly rewarding pastimes on the Planet. So it is no wonder that it’s so hugely popular. The human race has been fishing for literally thousands of years, though back then, we would primarily fish for food, rather than recreation. These days however, things are much different. Though one of the most appealing aspects of fishing is the fact that the sport has stayed true to its roots. One of the ways of enticing a fish on the bank is by using fishing lures. Here is a brief history of fishing lures.

A very early Paw Paw lure

An original vintage Paw paw lure.

Lure fishing for example, is highly challenging yet incredibly exciting because, as opposed to using live bait, the angler is instead in charge of the Fishing lures in order to hopefully attract the fish. But how far back do fishing lures date, and have they changed much since their initial conception? Well, let’s take a look, shall we, as we look at the history of fishing lures.

What are fishing lures.

 Fishing lures are specially designed objects which anglers attach to the end of their fishing line before casting off into the water. The idea is that the lure looks and acts just like live bait, and so it attracts fish.

Fishing lures use movement, unique shapes, unique designs, natural light, and bright colours in order to attract fish and entice them into clamping down onto the hook. Though you may think that fishing lures are relatively new, in reality, they have been used in fishing for centuries upon centuries.

Lets go back in time.

Now that we’ve looked at what fishing lures are, let’s now take you on a journey back through time, as we look at a brief history of fishing lures:

Small Pike caught on modern lure.

Small Pike caught on modern lure.

Paleolithic fishing?Though there is no definitive proof of this, experts have found the remains of items such as hooks made from bones and metals, in caves. Some people believe that these hooks were used by cavemen during the Paleolithic era, to catch fish.

2000 BC Back in 2000 BC, in parts of the world including China and Egypt, anglers would use primitive rods to catch fish. In actual fact, the Chinese were believed to be the first to create fishing lines, which they made from silk. Many anglers would use hooks on the end of these lines, with different anglers choosing different designs.

3rd century AD The ancient Romans were also huge fans of fishing. In fact, Claudius Aelianus would document his fly fishing experiences in writing. He also wrote about how he would create his own lures, and use things such as feathers, lead, bronze, and even horsehair, to help attract the fish.

Mid 19th century  – During the mid 19th century, lure fishing really took off in a big way. Because of this, fishing lures were manufactured on mass scale. The lures were very basic in design, which is why they were so successful. As manufacturers, such as Heddon and Pflueger, believed in keeping things simple.

Why not make your own.

A matter of taste Despite the fact that fishing lures were now mass-produced, for many keen anglers, part of the excitement of fishing lay in the creating of their own unique lures. Many lure fishermen nowadays, when they aren’t sat by the waters edge, will make their own lures. From soft plastics to spinners or wooden type lures, there is a huge amount of different styles and designs to choose from, from very basic designs to more complicated ones.

Categories: General Fishy chat


GeorgeS · July 21, 2017 at 6:44 am

Great article, very informative and interesting. It’s funny how almost everything we have has been invented by our ancestors. I am really surprised to learn that fishing lures are dating back to ancient history. I am wondering, how the ancient people have learned what type of lure to use, to get the attention of the fish?

Warren · July 21, 2017 at 8:39 pm

I’ve been studying history for a long time, but never have I seen something like the history of the lure. Your descriptions of the Romans and the Chinese give me a great visual about them out there in their highlands trying to land the big one. Back sometime, someone must have thought about how to bring the fish to me instead of me jumping into the water with my bare hands. I’ve always been a live and rubber worm fisherman, but I’m intrigued now and will probably give this a shot. Thanks for the great info.

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