Roy Steenrod Catskill Collectibles - Vise, Game Warden Manual, Book


For sale here are three Roy Steenrod historical pieces for the discriminating collector. You will simply never find these items elsewhere. They are truly one-of-a-kind.

To begin, I'll share some details about who these items were in the possession of when I stumbled upon them. In this context, I'll substitute "John" for his real name. Serious buyers can of course call me and I can provide direct phone access to John so that you can hear about the history of these items first-hand. John has lived in Sullivan County (Liberty, New York) his entire life. He has been a trapper and hunter, no desk jobs, no computers, no email address to this day. He was once honored with the award of "Sullivan County Sportsman of the Year". John's uncle and fellow game warden with Roy Steenrod was close and personal friends with many of the innovators and now legends of Catskill fly-tying and fly-fishing. He spent his younger years in their shadows, accumulating many experiences and to this day retaining many stories and interesting facts passed down by his uncle about such greats as Gordon, Steenrod, Hewitt, Christian et al. John not only acquired many of his Catskill collectibles via direct pass-through from his uncle, but also to this day he continues to maintain a strong connection to the Catskill traditions and is well known as one of the premier collectors of flies and other items.

There is not much literature available for the internet enthusiast on Roy Steenrod. What you can find out there includes the widely known fact that Roy was the only direct student of Theodore Gordon (widely known as the Father of American Dry-Fly Fishing in the late 1800's), as well as a good friend and fishing companion of Gordon's. Roy is most famous for his "Hendrickson" dry fly pattern. You can find more history in Ed Van Put's amazing book, "Trout Fishing in the Catskills". Rather than eloquently plagiarizing here, you can find the link online here and peruse Chapter 14 which talks about Gordon, Steenrod and the other Catskill greats.

Now for the three items for sale here at Vintage Fly Tackle. I've summarized comments in the authentication letters for each item, written up in January 2013 by Dave Catizone, Catskill Angling Historian, CFFCM Museum Consultant and Catskill Fly Tyers Guild Member.

First, Roy's personal Game Warden / Conservation Handbook. Published in 1925, this was Roy's personal manual which he carried throughout his career as game warden for twenty-six years, from 1927 to his forced retirement in 1952, upon reaching age 70. Roy signed the inside cover as you can see in the photos.

Second, one of Roy's personal fly-tying vises. Labeled "Metal Specialties Company, Attleboro Massachusetts", this vise is a standard C-clamp, adjustable screw, table design with slanted elongated neck, featuring a tension clamp jaw with a medium to fine tapered jaw design to accept standard trout hooks. This the "Holbrook" model. The metal vise exhibits a nice patina as one would expect, shows honest use, no rust, jaws appear to be holding up well, as does the tension clamp. In average to slightly above average condition, non-altered in any way, quite nice considering the amount of use it must have seen throughout Roy's long years of fly tying. This is a very collectible item for any serious fly tying collector/enthusiast.

Last but not least, a very nice slip-cased 1971 edition of the book by Alvin R. Grove, "The Lure and Lore of Trout Fishing". This book was given to Roy by a close friend and was soon passed on by Roy to another good friend, George Hahn, of Jeffersonville, NY as a gesture of Roy's close friendship with him, along with Roy's signature and a personal narrative about the book on the inside cover. The photos clearly show this fine piece of history of Roy's later years.

Together, I am extremely proud to offer these three items, spanning Roy Steenrod's esteemed life as one of the Catskill greats that so dramatically influenced fly-tying and fly-fishing in this country. All three items comes with separate authentication letters from Dave Catizone as well as a personalized letter from John. I'd be happy to share copies of the authentication letters upon request.


Shipping Information
We ship at cost to the buyer and in the majority of cases do so via UPS with full insurance and signature. There are cheaper options but our experience has been that you get what you pay for and that it's not worth taking risks when shipping what are often one-of-a-kind items. Your shipping estimate will be calculated at checkout and if you have any questions please contact us. Please note the buyers are responsible for any applicable import duties or fees that may levied. Due to the importance of packing items carefully please allow up to two weeks for arrival (depending on how busy we are) though we certainly do our best to get items to you as expeditiously as possible.
Other Terms
Unless otherwise noted, all items come with a 3-day inspection period during which they can be returned to us for a full refund (provided that they are in the same condition in which they left our shop). Return shipping is the responsibility of the buyer. If an item is returned, we will issue a refund within 10 days upon receipt. Refunds will be either administered by providing a check or, when possible, by canceling a credit card purchase.