Frederick Nelson Journals and Flies, 1973-2010  PDF

Overview of the Collection

Creator
Nelson, Frederick A.
Title
Frederick Nelson Journals and Flies
Dates
1973-2010
Quantity
1 linear foot
Collection Number
Collection 2627, MtBC, us (collection)
Summary
The Frederick Nelson Journals and Flies consists of 13 journals and flies created by unknown artisans. The journals describe Nelson’s fishing excursions in Montana and around the United States and Canada. Also recorded in the journals are locations where he fished, the species he caught, the size and of the fish, the time he started fishing, the temperature outside, the flies he used, the amount of strikes it took to catch a fish, specific pools and their location on the river, the time he left the river, who he was fishing with, and whether or not he released the fish among other notes.
Repository
Montana State University Library, Merrill G. Burlingame Special Collections
Montana State University-Bozeman Library
Merrill G Burlingame Special Collections
P.O. Box 173320
Bozeman, MT
59717-3320
Telephone: 406-994-4242
Fax: 406-994-2851
spcoll@www.lib.montana.edu
Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research.

Languages
English


Biographical NoteReturn to Top

Frederick Nelson is an avid fly tier and fly fisher who extensively recorded his fishing experiences inside and outside of Montana. Nelson was born in New York in 1944 and after serving five years in the military he moved to Montana in 1972 and enrolled in Montana State University’s graduate program for fish and wildlife management. Nelson still resides and fishes in the state of Montana.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

Materials include 13 journals by Fred Nelson, ranging from 1973 to 2010, describing his fishing excursion in Montana and around the United States and Canada. Also included are a wealth of flies kept in plastic bags created by unknown artisans. In the journals, Nelson recorded where he fished, the species he caught, the size and of the fish, the time he started fishing, the temperature outside, the flies he used, the amount of strikes it took to catch a fish, specific pools and their location on the river, the time he left the river, who he was fishing with, and whether or not he released the fish among other notes. The collection is separated into three series: the bulk of series one pertains to fishing trips taken inside of Montana, the bulk of series two pertains to fishing trips taken outside of Montana (particularly in British Columbia, Canada, and Washington State), and series three includes collected flies.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top


Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Series 1:  Journals - Trips in Montana, 1973-2010Return to Top

This series includes journals ranging from 1973-2010, the bulk of the entries pertaining to fishing excursions taken inside of the state of Montana.

Container(s) Description Dates
box-volume
1/1
Gallatin and Madison Rivers
Ranging from February 1973 to August 1973, this journal describes the amount and species of fish Nelson caught as well as the time he got to the river, the time he left, the temperature outside, what flies he used, the amount of strikes it took him to catch a fish, whether or not he released the fish, the stream he was on, and on occasion, the specific pool he was fishing. Streams, rivers, and bodies of water include: West Gallatin River, Story Creek, the Madison River, Baker Creek, Yellowstone River, Rocky Creek and others. The Bulk of Nelson’s notes focus on the West Gallatin and Madison Rivers.
1973
1/2
Gallatin River
Ranging from August 1973 to August 1974, this journal describes the amount and species of fish Nelson caught as well as the time he got to the river, the time he left, the temperature outside, what flies he used, the amount of strikes it took him to catch a fish, whether or not he released the fish, the stream he was on, and on occasion, the specific pool he was fishing. Streams, rivers, and bodies of water include: West Gallatin River, the East Gallatin River, and Ben Hart Creek. The bulk of Nelson’s notes focus on the West Gallatin River.
1973-1974
1/3
Ben Hart Creek, and the Gallatin River
Ranging from May 1974 to July 1975, this journal describes the amount and species of fish Nelson caught as well as the time he got to the river, the time he left, the temperature outside, what flies he used, the amount of strikes it took him to catch a fish, whether or not he released the fish, the stream he was on, and on occasion, the specific pool he was fishing. Streams, rivers, and bodies of water include: Ben Hart Creek, Gallatin and Henry’s Fork, Madison, Armstrong Spring Creek, Hyalite Reservoir, and the Yellowstone. The bulk of Nelson’s noted focus on Ben Hart Creek and the West Gallatin River.
1974-1975
1/4
Fisherman’s Log, West Gallatin River
Ranging from June 1975 to November 1976, this fishing log is issued by the Montana Department of Fish and Game. The log records the date, hours fished at each location, the name of the body of water, the nearest town or county, the species of fish caught, the number of fish caught, and the average length of the fish. Streams, rivers, and bodies of water include: the Clark Fork River, George Town Lake, Flint Creek, the Big Hole River, the Yellowstone River, the West Gallatin River, the Madison River, the Beaverhead River, Clark Canyon Reservoir, Hyalite Reservoir, the Big Horn River, and Bear Creek. The bulk of the entries pertain to the West Gallatin River.
1975-1976
1/5
Fisherman’s Log, the Madison River
Ranging from January 1977 to April 1977, this fishing log is issued by the Montana Department of Fish and Game. The log records the date, hours fished at each location, name of the body of water, the nearest town or county, the species of fish caught, the number of fish caught, and the average length of the fish. Streams, rivers, and bodies of water include: West Gallatin River, the Madison River, and the Yellowstone River. The bulk of the entries pertain to the Madison River.
1977
1/6
Smith River
Ranging from March 1986 to March 1995, this journal contains notes pertaining to the date, location fished, who Nelson fished with, the amount, size, and quantity of fish caught, the time spent on the river, (occasionally) the approximate time Nelson caught each fish, the kind of fly he used, as well as newspaper clippings, river pamphlets, business cards, correspondence, printed and hand drawn maps, fishing regulations, and fishing licenses. The bulk of this journal pertains to fishing on Montana streams and rivers which include but are not limited to: the Smith River, the Yellowstone River, the Madison River, Bear Trap Canyon, the upper Gallatin River, and the Big Hole River. There are also a wealth of journal entries pertaining to trips outside of Montana, the bulk of these entries focus on steelhead fishing in British Columbia, Canada, and trout and salmon fishing in Washington State.
1986-1995
1/7
Unlabeled
Ranging from May 1995 to October 2002, this journal contains notes pertaining to the date, location fished, who Nelson fished with, the amount and quantity of fish caught, the time spent on each river, (occasionally) the approximate time Nelson caught each fish, the kind of flies he used each day, as well as newspaper and magazine clippings, river pamphlets, business cards, correspondence, maps, fishing regulations, and fishing licenses. The bulk of this journal pertains to fishing on Montana streams and rivers which include but are not limited to: the Smith River, the Yellowstone River, the Madison River, Bear Trap Canyon, the upper Gallatin River, and the Big Hole River. There are also a wealth of journal entries pertaining to trips outside of Montana, the bulk of these entries focus on steelhead fishing in British Columbia, Canada, and trout and salmon fishing in Washington State.
1995-2002

Series 2:  Journals - Trips outside of Montana, 1984-2010Return to Top

This series includes fishing journals and logs, with the bulk of the entries pertaining to fishing trips taken outside of the state of Montana (primarily in Washington State and British Columbia) from 1984-2010.

Container(s) Description Dates
box-volume
2/8
Unlabeled
Ranging from March 2003 to October 2010, this journal contains notes pertaining to the date, location fished, who Nelson fished with, the quantity of fish caught, the time spent on each river, (occasionally) the approximate time Nelson caught each fish, the kind of fly he used each day, as well as newspaper and magazine clippings, river pamphlets, business cards, correspondence, maps, fishing regulations, fishing licenses, patches, and photographs. Also included in this journal are flies taped to the individual pages with descriptions of the flies with occasional descriptions about which body of water they worked best on. (The images of flies were scanned in color for better reference.) The bulk of this journal pertains to fishing on Montana streams and rivers which include but are not limited to: the Smith River, the Yellowstone River, the Madison River, the Gallatin River, the Big Hole River, and the Big Horn River. Also included is a list of “2010 Lake Total” documenting the lakes Nelson fished in Canada and the US in 2010 with the amount of days fished, the number of trout landed, and the average size of the fish recorded (this chart can be found on the last page of Volume 8). There are also a wealth of journal entries pertaining to trips taken outside of Montana, the bulk of these entries focus on trout fishing on lakes and rivers in Canada.
2003-2010
2/9
Unlabeled
This journal pertains to two steelhead fishing trips taken outside of the state of Montana, ranging from 1989-1990, and other fishing trips taken within 1992-1993. The journal holds detailed accounts of Nelson’s expenses during the fishing trips. The journal documents Nelson’s expenses such as: gas, food, licenses, and maps, with dates attached. Nelson journals his experiences on the water with information on the flies he used, what kind of fish he caught, the size of the fish, the time he started fishing, and the temperature of the water. Included are hand drawn maps, and detailed directions to the locations of bodies of water. At the end of each respective fishing trip section, Nelson creates a summary for each trip and body of water.
1989-1993
2/10
Unlabeled
This journal pertains to Steelhead fishing trips taken outside of the state of Montana during the years 1994-1997. Nelson records the amount of time spent on the road reaching his destinations, who he traveled and fished with, the temperature of the day, the species and size of fish he caught, hand drawn maps, and which bodies of water Nelson fished on. Nelson also included some of the flies and hooks he used, which are taped to the journal entry pertaining to the fly. At the end of each trip Nelson created a “trip summary”, which details the amount of fish landed, the average and median size of the fish, and some specifics on what types of flies he used.
1994-1997
2/11
Steelhead
This is an envelope with miscellaneous entries collected from Nelson’s 1985 Steelhead trip. The entries detail the date, what river Nelson fished on, how many fish he landed and how many he lost, and the road Nelson stopped on to get onto the river or body of water. This entry comes unsequentially because it correlates with the next journal in the series since that journal begins with Nelson’s 1985 Steelhead trip; the compiler believes these entries were meant to belong together.
1985
2/12
Steelhead fishing trips and “Steelhead Summary”
This journal details Nelson and his traveling partners’ expenses on each trip, recounting gas, lodging, food, and licenses expenses. The journal also details the body of water Nelson and company fished on, the amount of fish caught by each individual, the size of the fish caught, and the date fished. Also included is a business card from a fishing camp in British Columbia where the fishing trips took place. At the end of this volume is a detailed summary of each Steelhead fishing trip taken from 1984 to 2007; the summary details the year, the amount of fish landed on the entire trip, and the average amount of fish caught each day.
1984-2007
2/13
Atlantic salmon / Steelhead
Ranging from October 1997 to October 2005, this journal recounts Atlantic salmon and steelhead fishing trips taken outside of Montana (primarily in Washington State and British Columbia). The journal entries recount the body of water, the temperature, the amount of fish caught, and the types of flies used. At the end of each trip, Nelson created a summary of the trip, averaging the amount of fish caught each day, and the amount of fish lost.
1997-2005
2/14
British Columbia Lake and Steelhead Log
Ranging from October 2005 to September 2010, this journal pertains to fishing trips taken in British Columbia, Canada. The journal contains entries pertaining to the date fished, the body of water, who Nelson fished with, summaries of fish landed and lost, the temperature, the size of fish caught, and the kinds of flies used. Also included are flies taped to the entries, and pictures of Nelson and company on the river.
2005 (cont.)–2010

Series 3:  Flies, 1993-2005Return to Top

This series includes flies collected, and some presumably tied, by Nelson. The flies are separated into bags, with either one or multiple flies within and with dates written on the containers ranging from 1993-2005.

Container(s) Description Dates
Box
3
Flies
Included are various flies collected and some presumably created by Nelson. The flies are kept in small plastic containers, typically labeled with a year, with the years range from 1993-2005.

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top