Old Bass Boats – 1978 Part 1

1978 Sebring Bass Boat ad.

1978 Sebring Bass Boat ad.

This column seems to be the one most frequented by readers so we’re going to give you more of what you like – Old Bass Boats 1978 style. In Part 1, we’re going to start out with the various tournament organizations’ specialty boats. This phenomena all started with Ray Scott and the 1971 Bassmasterr Classic when he purchased from Rebel 25 identical boats for use by the 24 Classic contenders on Lake Mead. After the event the boats were put up for sale and became another form of income for the fledgling tournament organization. [Read more…]

Dewey Yopp – National Bass Association

Charter Issue for The National Bassman published by National Bass Association.

Charter Issue for The National Bassman published by National Bass Association.

Last week we posted an article on the Last Hoorah for the American Bass Fisherman (ABF) organization. In that piece we talked a little about that organization and its purchase by National Bass Association (NBA) in 1978. There were a lot of unanswered questions about this time in the history of competitive fishing. American Bass Fisherman’s owner, George Oates was being investigated for fraud yet still running events, NBA was organized and purchased the Professional Bass Association and a number of other tournament organizations were coming and going at a rapid pace. It was definitely a time of flux in the industry and many of the anglers who supported these organizations didn’t know if they would still be around for the next month’s tournament that was scheduled. [Read more…]

National Bassman Magazine Covers

National Bassman Magazine Cove

National Bass Association (NBA) was operated by Dewey Yopp from late 1976 through the start of the 1980s. The organization was a spinoff of American Bass Fisherman (ABF) after the owner of that organization, George Oates, was convicted of fraud and rigging tournaments. Yopp was the ABF tournament director until he found out about Oates and decided to start his own organization. NBA competed against B.A.S.S. for top tournament anglers and ended up folding due to the major financial backer pulling out. From February 1977 through July 1979 they produced a well put together magazine called The National Bassman. There are 14 known issues that were printed. Here are the covers for 13 of those issues. Issue Volume 2 – Number 2 is the only issue I am missing. It would cover the gap between April and June 1977 – a three-month gap, which makes me wonder if it was even printed. If you happen to have this or any other issues of The National Bassman and would like to donate them, please contact us at terry@bassfishingarchives.com.

We hope you enjoy looking at these old bass magazine covers.

 

American Bass Fisherman’s Last Hoorah

American Bass Fisherman Billy Westmorland Bass Fishing School ad from the July/August 1978 issue of American Bass Fisherman.

American Bass Fisherman Billy Westmorland Bass Fishing School ad from the July/August 1978 issue of American Bass Fisherman.

Scanning my stacks of magazines you never know what you’ll come up with that might be of interest to share. Old ads always provide a good look back at where we’ve been, what mistakes we don’t want to make again and also provide a laugh or two more so than not. So, while scanning the last issue published from the American Bass Fisherman (July/August 1978), I was a little intrigued by the ad that’s the subject of today’s article.

The ad, titled, “American Bass Fisherman presents the Billy Westmorland Fishing School,” caught me by surprise for more than one reason. [Read more…]

Patch Pirate – Part 1

From top left clockwise: National Bass Association (NBA), Project Sports Inc. (PSI), American Bass Fisherman.

From top left clockwise: National Bass Association (NBA), Project Sports Inc. (PSI), American Bass Fisherman.

Yeah, I guess you can call me a patch pirate – but not in the derogatory sense of the name. I like patches, I’ve collected bass fishing patches all my life and I continue to collect bass fishing patches. It used to be by mail order, tackle shop purchase or early Bass Pro purchases but lately those venues have dried up. Now it’s all about online auctions or the nice person who contacts me and sends me their collection. [Read more…]

The Fishin’ Machine

Ricky Green holds his second 1st-place Bassmaster trophy from his win on Sam Rayburn in 1974. Photo May/June 1974 issue of  Bassmaster Magazine.

Ricky Green holds his second 1st-place Bassmaster trophy from his win on Sam Rayburn in 1974. Photo May/June 1974 issue of Bassmaster Magazine.

In 1985 one of the most-respected boat companies came out with a new-concept boat that rocked the bass boat industry. The boat had all the amenities needed for high-level competition. They were fast, offered a passenger rod trough, rod locker ventilation and a console that looked more like it should be in an F-16 than a boat. The boat was the Cajun Ricky Green Fishin’ Machine.

By 1985 Ricky Green had been fishing as a full-time professional for a dozen years. He fished his first tournament at the age of 24 – the 1968 Arkansas State Championship at Greers Ferry – and won it. In that event he met Jimmy Houston, Larry Nixon and Jerry McKinnis. [Read more…]

More Tournament Associations – American Angler

American Angler Cover Winter 1978Competitive bass fishing has a history that dates back to 1955 when a group of anglers in Texas started the Texas State Bass Tournament. Not long after that in 1960 Hy Peskin started his World Series of Sportfishing which took state champions from all over the east through the Midwest and pitted them against each other in an international championship event. The problem with this event was the rules were always a moving target and the anglers could weigh in essentially any fish, as long as they had fins – although black bass took more points than the other creatures.

Then in 1967 a man by the name of Ray Scott changed all of that. Rained out of a day’s fishing one day he sat in his hotel and envisioned bass fishing being a sport much like bowling or golf – a professional sport where anglers could become stars and make a living by casting and catching bass. By 1968 the Bass Anglers Sportsman Society was born. [Read more…]

CAST Magazine and Charlie Evans

CAST Cover Jan-Feb 1984FLW Outdoors and its numerous fishing leagues are pretty much the only competition the Bass Anglers Sportsman Society has these days. This wasn’t so back in the early days of tournament bass fishing when you had circuits such as Western Bass Fishing Association (WBFA), U.S. Bass, Project Sports INC (PSI), Bass Caster’s Association (BCA), National Bass Association (NBA) and a bevy of other organizations vying for the professional bass spotlight.

But FLW Outdoors didn’t just appear out of nowhere to give ole’ Ma B.A.S.S. a run for her money. Instead the roots of FLW Outdoors can be traced to an organization called Operation Bass – or better known by many as The Red Man Circuit. [Read more…]

Before Wraps There was Wimp

1977 Limited Edition NBA Medalist Hurst ad by Wimp Cantrell.

1977 Limited Edition NBA Medalist Hurst ad by Wimp Cantrell.

Bassmaster had their Classic Ranger-made boats, BCA had their Championship Bass Cat Boats – why not National Bass have their own boat too? That’s exactly what we’re looking at here folks, except this boat differed from their standard Medalist Championship Hurst bass boat in that it was custom painted by Wimp Cantrell and in limited edition.

It’s a pretty cool concept as seen here by Orlando Wilson’s ride. I mean it’s not radically different from today’s wrapped boats. Looks clean and no one in your local Wednesday-nighter is bound to have one. [Read more…]

More Mail Order – Dixie Tackle and Supply

1977 Dixie Tackle and Supply ad.

1977 Dixie Tackle and Supply ad.

Over the last couple weeks we’ve been posting some stories on the National Bass Association’s magazine “The National Bassman.” Today we continue that trend with another NBA ad, this time placed by Dixie Tackle and Supply.

I did a quick internet search to see if DTS was still in business and came up zero. That’s kind of expected in this day of big-box tackle stores and internet shops but it was worth a try. Still I was hopeful that their magazine advertising had brought them enough business to make a name that would keep them afloat all these years. I guess it was a fruitless hope. [Read more…]

Another Bass Circuit – National Bass Association

National Bass Association membership ad circa 1978.

National Bass Association membership ad circa 1978.

I mentioned last week or so that Clyde Drury sent me some magazines last week and this week I’m going to continue to put little bits and pieces of those magazines out here for all to see. Two weeks ago I mentioned how he sent me BCA’s “the Lunker Hole” magazines and posted a couple of stories from them here and here. Well, today I’m going to delve into another set of magazines, this time The National Bassman published by National Bass Association (NBA) of Lake City Florida.

Clyde sent me about a year’s worth of magazines from 1977 to 1978. Again, much like “the Lunker Hole,” they’re filled with some really cool ads of the time and better yet, tournament reports that show some interesting names and figures.

To start off the look down the National Bass Association’s existence, I thought it was kind of interesting to look at their 1978 tournament schedule and NBA membership offer that was in one of the magazines. [Read more…]