Although the Fred Arbogast Company was not founded in until 1930, Fred Arbogast, the avid angler, was making and selling fishing lures as early as the mid-1920s. Working by day at the local Goodyear plant in Akron, Ohio, Arbogast spent evenings in his basement, perfecting metal and rubber lures with names like the Weedless Spin-Tail Kicker and the all-metal Tin Liz, both of which had real glass eyes and tails that spun. Some Tin Liz lures were named after sunfish and minnows, with detailed painting on their surfaces to better mimic their namesakes. Later, a Big Tin Liz made for catching giant muskies would be a short-lived addition to the Arbogast catalog.

In the 1930s, Arbogast introduced a number of new lures, including the flat-headed Wiggler, which Arbogast dressed up with a patented rubber skirt to create the Hawaiian Wiggler. But Arbogast’s biggest contribution to the world of fishing lures was probably the wooden, peanut-shaped Jitterbug, introduced in 1937 and patented in 1940. In fact, the Jitterbug began in the 1920s as a failed attempt on Arbogast’s part to create a plug lure similar to ones being made by Heddon. Arbogast’s prototype had been carved from a piece of broomstick attached to the bowl of a spoon, but it was only after tinkering with the lure a decade later that it became the Jitterbug.

During World War II, Jitterbugs gave up their metal lips for plastic ones due to wartime rationing. Around the same time, Arbogast made a number of lighter lures for bass fly fishing, which was gaining in popularity. These included the Hula-Spinner, Hula Dancer, and Hula Popper, whose prototypes were carved from white poplar by Brooke Ortell before being cast in plastic. Arbogast also made the most of a technique called buzzing, in which a lure was reeled in quickly by the angler to mimic the behavior of a large bug skittering along the water’s surface. Thus was born the Sputter Fuss, which resembled a skirted Kicker with a weed guard.

Arbogast died in 1948, but his company continued to innovate in the 1950s and ’60s. Plastic Jitterbugs were introduced, while fly-rod size Tin Liz lures were produced in a number of sizes out of lightweight stamped aluminum. The Arbo-Gaster was developed to catch bottom-feeding fish, as was the Mud Bug, which resembled a backward-crawling crawfish when it was being reeled in.


Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Joes Old Lures

Joes Old Lures

Joe Yates' website is a great showcase for hundreds of old fishing lures, providing high resolution photos and in m… [read review or visit site]

Mrlurebox.com

Mrlurebox.com

Take a big bite - you won't want to just nibble at Robbie Pavey's gallery of over 300 antique fishing lures, many w… [read review or visit site]

AntiqueLures.com

AntiqueLures.com

This extensive site features over 500 pages of information on pre-1940 wood fishing lures and lure boxes. Start wit… [read review or visit site]

Oldfishinglure.com

Oldfishinglure.com

This site is sure to snag you with its great collection of fishing lures from the early 1900s. Includes lures from … [read review or visit site]

TackleCollecting.com

TackleCollecting.com

Larry Nicholson's site dedicated to vintage fishing lures. Features beautiful images of lures and boxes from Fred A… [read review or visit site]



Clubs & Associations

Discussion Forums

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

2 Vintage Arbogast Jitterbugs - Sparrow - Brown Frog(lot Of 3) Arbogast Buzz Plug 1oz G905-10 CoachdogArbogast Buzz Plug Fishing LureFred Arbogast Hula Popper Lure Lot Of 2 1 In BoxFred Arbogast Tipsy Lure New In Package Nice **nr**Old Vintage Fred Arbogast Sputterbug Lure Lures CoachdogVintage Very Good Quality Balsa Wood Fred Arbogast Fishing Lure 5" VgcFred Arbogast Metal Tin Liz Sunfish 1930's Old Fishing Lure Dekalb Fred Arbogast Fishing Lure New In The Box Vintage Arbogast Jitterbug Old 2 Pc HardwareVintage Heddon Arbogast JitterbugArbogast Jitterbug Black Old Hardware 11 Vintage Fred Arbogast Vintage Lures W Boxes "lot L1"2 Classic Arbogast Tuff Colors Jitterbug Fishing Lures Orng/blkspotsArbogast Jitterbug White Plastic Lip5 Vintage Jitterbug Lures In Boxes Fred ArbogastVintage Fred Arbogast Jitterbug Lure Plastic Lip Lure Wwii Lip Yellow HerringLot Of 8 Fred Arbogast Jitterbug Fishing Lures Lot Of 21 Vintage Fishing Lures Jitterbug L&s Arbogast Rapala & More Wow !!Lot Of 16 Fishing Lures - Rapala, Arbogast, Strike King, Bagley's Vintage Tackle Box With Lures South Bend Creek Chub Heddon Helin Arbogast GeFred Arbogast Tough Big Tin Liz Glass Eye Fishing LureArbogast Sputterbuzz Fishing Lure Trio 2 Great ColorsVintage Fred Arbogast Pug Nose Nib W/ Papers Great Color6 Vintage Jitterbug Hula Popper Mud Bug Lures In Boxes Fred ArbogastArbogast Jitterstick Silver FlashArbogast Jitterbug Perch Plastic LipVintage Tackle~metal~pflueger Pippin~arbogast Tin Liz~fly Size~fishing~lureVintage Rare Color Rattlin Fred Arbogast Pug Nose Fishing LureArbogast Tin Liz Thin Liz Lot Of Lures Vintage9 Vintage Jitterbug Hawaiian Wiggler Lure Boxes Fred ArbogastVintage Fishing Lure Lot Of 4 Fred Arbogast Rapala & OthersFred Arbogast Jitterbug Lure Early Wood ModelRare Vintage Fred Arbogast 1-5/8" Hula Popper Orange Balck Dot Bass Fishing LureFred Arbogast Jitterbug. Very Rare. Shrimp 5/8oz. Old Arbogast Jitterbug Lure Frog In Worn Picture Box With Paper. Akron Ohio Rare Veryrare Vintage Arbogast Translucent Jitterbug Silver Flake Rattler 2.5". 6 Hula Dancer Fred Arbogast Vintage Lures Lot L75 Vintage Musky Jitterbug Lure Lips Fred Arbogast8 Vintage Arbo-gaster Hula Dancer Lure Bodies Fred ArbogastVintage Unfished Fred Arbogast Arby - Orange Sunburst - 4 1/2 Inch8 Vintage Arbogast Lures! Boxes! Nice!! Lqqk!Arbogast Jitterbug Fishing LureVintage Mixed Lot Of Fishing Lures (11) Heddon, Arbogast, RapalaVintage Lot Of Arbogast Fishing Lures Hula Poppers / JitterbugsArbogast Hula Popper...green Frog...prototype/folk Art...(1)vintage Arbogast Dorado, 4-1/2in.body, Crankbait,fishing Lure,old Tackle,boxLarge Lot Of Vintage Fred Arbogast Lures,boxes,papers,hooks, Etc.1 Arbogast Jointed Jitterbug Fishing Lure (noc) Pink Glow In The Dark-red LipFred Arbogast Jitterbug. Very Rare. . Orange/black DotsLot Of 9 Junk Beater Fishing Lures Tackle Box Find Arbogast Bomber Cordell L@@kVintage Fishing Lure Lot Of 2 Fred Arbogast SputterbugVintage Fishing Lure Fred Arbogast Mud BugVintage Fishing Lure Lot Of 2 Fred Arbogast SputterbugArbogast..hocus Locust...surface Lure..top Water..nip..bass...discontinued.. Classic Arbogast Pug Nose Fishing Lure In Tuff Purple Scale 3" !!Old Fishing Lures Arbogast Jitterbug Rare Clear Lip Solid Black Topwater 3/8 Oz.Vintage Fred Arbogast Fred's Frog Fishing Lure Lot Of (4) Fred Arbogast Jitterbug Vintage / Antique Fishing Lure 2"Vintage Fred Arbogast Jitterbug Fishing Lure