The Salt Water Lure Collector Club (SWLCC) was established in 2009 and is a non-profit organization made up of a diverse group of individuals who share a common interest, or should we call it a passion, for the history of saltwater sport fishing and the lures and lure makers of times past. The “Golden Age of Surf Fishing” from roughly 1945 to 1960 is the focus of many collectors, but baits made and used prior to the end of WWII as well as lures produced well after the 1960’s, including present day custom plug builders, are also of interest to many.
The regions which seem to attract the most interest from collectors are New England, New York & New Jersey. Many highly collectible baits have been produced by and for saltwater fishermen along the Striper coast. Some by large companies such as Heddon and Creek Chub and numerous others by small garage and basement workshop enterprises with names that are music to collectors ears like So-Co, Hicky-Do, Woolner Brothers, Charlie Russo, Famous Floyd Roman, Stan Gibbs and many others you will read about on our website. Many of these smaller companies were only producing baits for a few years. Some were operational for only four or five years and yet may have produced baits with incredibly beautiful paint patterns and boxes with snappy slogans and wonderful graphics.
Most of us are also involved in the pursuit of striped bass and other salt water species whether by boat or by beaches and rocky shores. Some may drag bait, others may flex the long wand, but all of us throw a plug “Into the Great Gamble” from time to time. What fun it is to clean up a vintage bait and toss it back into the surf after 40 or 50 years spent idle in an old shed somewhere. Of course the best finds are carefully preserved and destined for the display case, while the rest may be fished, traded, sold or given to a young collector to get him or her started in a hobby that can bring a lifetime of enjoyment and camaraderie with fellow collectors.
The club was formed because as a group we share a passion for the striper past. We enjoy getting together at our annual show and sharing stories and knowledge with each other about these famous lure makers. This year's show will take place on Saturday, April 29, at the Trowbridge Tavern in Bourne, MA. The event is free and open to the public with doors opening at 8 AM.
There is still much to learn and even more to be discovered. If you collect saltwater lures whether vintage or by the current custom lure makers of today then we believe you will enjoy this club and our show.
All members of the SWLCC will receive a club membership card, full use of the club’s private online membership forum, full use of the club’s online library with hundreds of photos and articles on vintage saltwater lures and a membership directory linking you to other like-minded collectors. For more information, please visit www.swlcc.com.