We’ve talked a little about American Bass Fisherman on here before, most recently last week when we talked about a picture of an ABF patch. In that piece we mentioned that the original owner of ABF, George Oates, started the circuit to compete against B.A.S.S., that he got in trouble with the law and in the end John Fox ended up with it before it went bust.
Today we have a little to show you what American Bass Fisherman was like through their February/March 1974 issue.
As stated in a prior article on the subject we covered that the original name for the organization was The American-Florida Bass Fisherman. By this issue the name on the cover had changed to the American Bass Fisherman, probably to get more support from the rest of the country. You get that feeling when you look at the list of writers on the contents page. Bill Rice and Jim Putney were from southern California, Al Lindner from Minnesota, John Fox from Texas and so on. Other writers of note would be Don Wirth and Larry Larson.
In the Editorial, Oates talks of the gas crunch, new writers, the expansion of ABF, the industry and its tightening of their belts and their new offices in Cocoa Beach, Florida (overlooking the water). That last statement right there, folks, should have been the big warning. The industry is in a downswing and ABF is sporting new digs on the water.
In the magazine, they advertised two future events – one on Lake Seminole and another touted as a gas saver on the Clermont Chain of Lakes. What I don’t understand, and he states this in his Editorial, was they were trying to make it easier for the angers by holding tournaments closer to home, i.e.: Florida. From what I can tell from this, he was making it more economical on ABF rather than anglers from states other than Florida.
Another cool little deal for those who liked patches and bumper sticker was the full-page ad for those products. I’ve included not only that ad but a variety of patches from American Bass Fisherman from the time.
I don’t know how much ABF had an effect on B.A.S.S. at the time, if any, but from the looks of this magazine and others I have they put out a decent product and one we’ll be talking about more in the future.
More pictures and other goodies below.