The Kent Frog lure was made by Samuel Friend, a former manager of the Pardee Company, a company which made fishing lures in the very early 1900's. According to Carl Luckey in his book "Old Lures and Fishing Tackle #4", Friend took over the company upon the retirement of the company's owner. Luckey states that the lure was "...listed in catalogs and ads variously as Kent Champion Floater, Kent Frog Floater, Kent Floating Bait, Manco Floating Frog, and finally the 'Pflueger Kent-Floater Bait.' " Luckey dates the lure to an advertisement found in a 1906 William Mills and Son fishing tackle catalog in which it was identified as a "Manco Floating Frog."
This wooden lure measures 2 1/8" in length, and has two unusual "bow tie" metal props on the front and back. There is also a red bead on the front and rear hardware. The two side trebles are attached with a thru- body wire hook hanger which is twisted at either end to hold the trebles. It has glass eyes which are yellow with black centers. The entire body was painted silver and then the top half overpainted. Due to aging, the top color is difficult to identify but it appears to have been brown with two black stripes running the length of the lure from the eyes to the tail and several black spots painted in various positions, typical of frog spotting.
Around 1919, Pflueger bought the rights to the lure and changed the props to Pflueger style propeller spinners. Some changes were also made in the lure's length and body shape resulting in two 'new' Kent Frogs measuring 2 1/4" in length. A later version still was 2" in length and had but a single belly treble rather than the two side trebles. Two of these style of Kent Frogs are shown in the picture above.
Karl White's "Fishing Tackle Antiques & Collectibles" lists the value of the original Kent Frog at between $3000-$4000. The Pflueger versions are listed at $200-$300 for the single belly hook version and $300-$500 for the 2 1/4" version depending upon body shape.
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Web Author: Tom Jacomet
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