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February 7, 1998 - Vol. 3, No. 3

Deuster's "The Gopher" Lure

Deuster's 'The Gopher'
Deuster's Gopher Lure and Box

Using gophers as fishing bait is a popular practice in Wisconsin (so is wearing a cheese wedge for a hat)(hmmm...) We first used chipmunks but took a lot of heat from the kids who thought Chip 'n Dale didn't look to cool on the end of the line...

So along comes Elmer Deuster of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and creates a lure known as "The Gopher", a lure intended to attract the attention of Wisconsin's most popular fish, the muskie. Muskies dearly love things that splash across the water so many of the muskie baits produced in Wisconsin imitate frogs, ducks (especially ducklings), muskrats, and of course, gophers.

The Gopher is a surface lure that is approximately 6" long and has two paddles, one on either side of the bait. It came with or without the bucktail. The lure is coated with a fuzzy material giving it the appearance of having a 'fur'.

Originally, it came in 4 colors, these being brown, black, grey, and yellow, but variations in these colors as well as marking differences exist.

The lure was made sometime during the late 1940's and into the 1950's. During that time, production of the lure was moved to Sheboygan, Wisconsin. It is believed Deuster still had an interest in it and the Sheboygan operation may only have been for the purpose of selling the lures, not making them.

Later still, the bait was sold by Marathon Bait Co., of Wausau, Wisconsin. The 'fur' finish on this lure was used on other musky baits as well including another lure made by Deuster called the "Musky Duckling".

The lure shown on this page was found at a NFLCC show in Milwaukee (January, 1998) and was priced at $250 NIB.


Martin's Combination Bait

Martin's Combination Bait

This edition we have 2 'unknown' lures, although the first isn't exactly unknown but one we'd like to know more about!

From Harvey Garrison comes the Martin's Combination Bait which appear's in Karl White's book but for which little else is known. According to Harvey, "It is stamped "Martin's Combination Bait" on the front and "Patened, U.S Aug.2 '04--Can. Nov. 22 '04 on the body. It is made of aluminum with feathered trebles."

Unknown Lure

Next comes this interesting fellow from Tom Hefferman which comes apart so that one can put a different colored body on it! Quite ingenious!

If you have any further information on any of the items displayed on this page which you'd like to share, please send your comments to me and I'll update the page accordingly. Contributions of interesting items and/or unknowns are encouraged! Lures pictured in Lure Lore are not for sale!

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Web Author: Tom Jacomet
Copyright 1998 by Tom Jacomet - ALL RIGHTS RESERVED