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    

Arbogast Jitterbug- Wooden- Older Non Catalog ColorOld Vintage Fred Arbogast 5/8 Oz. Jitterbug Lure White / Black Dots RareVintage Fred Arbogast Jitterbug Lure Super Tough Pearl Silver Herringbone 2nd St(rare Wood) Vtg Arbogast "ww2" (plastic Lip) Jitterbug Crankbait Plug Lure NrVintage E-z Display Fred Arbogast Picture Jitterbug Dealer Box Ez Lot Of Vintage Lures - Arbogast - Mann's - Heddon - Water Scout - Flutter FinVintage Fred Arbogast Jitterbug Lure In Tough Black Scale 2ndstyl Hook HangerVintage Fred Arbogast White/red Head Jitterbug Lure Wood Body Glass EyesTough Arbogast Jitterbug Lure Tuff Suede Finish Blue Head/white Yellow Fred Arbogast Picture Jitterbug Dealer Box VintageFred Arbogast Intro Plastic Jitterbug Lure In Box One Year Only 1941Fred Arbogast Jitterbug Minnow Lure Great Hardware Frog Spot Plastic Lip Tough Luminous Arbogast Jitterbug Lure Tuff Glowbug Finish Chipmunk ChipmonkFishing Lure "fred Arbogast Jitterbug" Tough Vtg Arbogast Jitterbug "jitterstick" (yellow Shore) Crankbait Plug Lure Nr30 New & Vintage Heddon Creek Chub Fred Arbogast Thin Fin Ccb Fishing Lure LotArbogast Hula Popper Lure Sparrow ColorLot Of 4 Arbogast Jitterbugs *nib*Reduced Vintage Rare Fred Arbogast Jitterbug Fishing LureArbogast Hula Popper Lure Brown Scale ColorArbogast Jitterbug- Plastic LipArbogast Novelty Corn LureLot Of 15 Fishing Lures, Heddon, Smithwick, Thinfin, ArbogastFred Arbogast BagArbogast Jitterbug Lure Sparrow ColorFred Arbogast Jitterbug Lure Tough Color Yellow Coach Dog Nice Old BaitFred Arbogast Hula Popper Clear Glittered Fishing Lure Tackle Box Find Nice L@@kTuff Vintage Fred Arbogast Jitterbug Rare Silver BackM23) 3 Vintage Metal Fishing Lures, Buel, Arbogast And MoreArbogast Jitterbug Lure New In Box Chrome ColorArbogast Hula PoppersVintage Fred Arbogast Jitterbug 3 1/2 In. Brown Crawdad Shaft Tandem Lure Exc.Vintage Arbogast Wheedler/rare Lure/new In Box!16 Vintage Fishing Lures Heddon Paw Paw Jc Higgins Arbogast SmithwickTough Luminous Arbogast Jitterbug Lure Tuff Glowbug Finish Grey MouseArbogast Jitterbug LuresVery Nice Fred Arbogast Jitterstick Vintage Fishing Lure Tackle Box Find Vintage Arbogast Jitterbug Crank Bait Fishing Lure I Combine Shipping Fred Arbogast Jitterbug Jointed LureLot Of 24 Fishing Lures Crankbait Hardbait Rebel Arbogast Cordell Heddon Bass7 Old Bass Lures-ccbc, L&s, Johnson, Arbogast Lot#50Vintage Fred Arbogast - Hula Popper Pumpkin 2 1/4" (nice Color)Fred Arbogast -red Wing Blackbird - JitterbugLot Of 5 Vintage Fred Arbogast Jitterbug Jitterstick Wood Fishing Lure #2Musky Jitterbug By Fred Arbogast, New In Original PackageVintage Old Fred Arbogast Jitterbug Fishing Lure In Box With Papers Nice Nr!!Vintage Arbogast Pug Nose Rainbow Trout Tuff Rare Mint Condition Lure Vintage Arbogast Hula Dancer Lure Old Rare Frog Fishing Bait Tackle Lures Vintage Fred Arbogast Fishing Lures Lot Hula Popper Arbo Gaster In PackageFred Arbogast Jitterbug -nice Color-Vintage Arbogast "rattlin" Jitterbug Htf "black" Topwater Crankbait Fishing Lure~ Vintage 3" Fred Arbogast Jitterbug With White Lip Red & White Fishing LureFred Arbogast Jitterbug 2 1/2" Vintage Fishing Lure Tackle Box Find Nice L@@kLot Of 12 Fishing Lures Crankbait Hardbait Rebel Arbogast Cotton Cordell Bass Vintage Fred Arbogast - 3 Jitterbug Lures 2 1/2" Tuff ColorsVintage Fred Arbogast Fly Rod Jitterbug 1.75" Fishing Lure-solid Black-nice!!!Rare Jitterbug Fishing Lure Rare Pink Jitterbug Lure Vintage Fred Arbogast LureFred Arbogast Jitterbug Fishing Lure Some Vintage Lot Of 4 Used Tackle Box FindVintage Arbogast Jitterbug Xl- 4 1/2" - Topwater Musky Muskie Pike LureVintage Fred Arbogast Jitterstick 3 1/2 In. White/red Head Spintail Lure Exc.