Welcome to Just Old Flies

Welcome to 'just old flies,' a section of methods and flies that used-to-be. These flies were tied with the only materials available. Long before the advent of 'modern' tying materials, they were created and improved upon at a far slower pace than todays modern counterparts; limited by materials available and the tiers imagination.

Once long gone, there existed a 'fraternity' of anglers who felt an obligation to use only the 'standard' patterns of the day. We hope to bring a bit of nostalgia to these pages and to you. And sometimes what you find here will not always be about fishing. Perhaps you will enjoy them. Perhaps you will fish the flies. Perhaps . . .


Part One hundred-three

Ferguson

Ferguson

Compiled by Deanna Birkholm


"This generally very gaudy fly of crimson, gold and green was named to honor Major J.B. Ferguson, one of Maryland's two Fish Commissioners in 1880-82, and later of the U.S. Fish Commission. It was orginated by the Major for Potomac River bass."

The Ferguson as described in Fly Patterns and Their Origins, is tied:

    Body:  Yellow floss.

    Rib:  Gold.

    Tail:  Yellow and scarlet.

    Wing:  Yellow striped brown turkey wings.

    Hackle:  Green.

In researching this fly, three other descriptions were found. The one shown in the photograph above, from Forgotten Flies is given as:
    Tag:  Flat gold tinsel.

    Tail:  Peacock sword, scarlet and yellow.

    Body:  Yellow floss.

    Rib:  Embossed gold tinsel.

    Wing: Woodcock (mottled brown) yellow and scarlet strips.

    Hackle:  Green.

    Head:  Red Wool.

    This illustration was chosen it seems to best fit the "very gaudy" description.

    "When George S. Page attended the International Fisheries Exhibition at Edinburgh, Scotland, in 1882, he took with him five live black bass, raised by the Major in Druid Hill Park, Baltimore. After being exhibited, they were presented to the Duke of Sutherland. This was the introduction of American bass into Scotland."

    Quoted section from Fly Patterns and Their Origins, published by Westshore Publications, Color photo from Forgotten Flies. We appreciate use permission!

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