Bibliography Background About KRIS

Eel River Fisheries Articles and Excerpts 1921-1934

Compiled by Susie Van Kirk, 1996

Arcata Union (AU) Arcata, 1886-1995
Blue Lake Advocate (BLA) Blue Lake, 1888-1969
Daily Humboldt Times (DHT) Eureka, 1874-1967 [Times-Standard]
Daily Times-Telephone (DTT) Eureka [DHT during 1880s]
Ferndale Enterprise (FE) Ferndale, 1878-present
Humboldt Standard (HS) Eureka, 1876-1967
Humboldt Times (HT) Eureka, 1854-1967 [Times-Standard]
Weekly Humboldt Times (WHT) Eureka [HT after daily started]
Weekly Times-Telephone (WTT) Eureka [weekly HT during 1880s]


HT (31 March 1921) May Compromise on Fish and Game Law--Senator Nelson has been notified by the fish and game commission of the Chamber of Commerce that it is willing to accept a compromise on the fish and game bill closing Eel river to commercial fishing, this compromise providing that the river should be closed January 1, 1922, instead of immediately. This is done in justice to those who have made investments in this line of business.


FE (1 April 1921) Eel River may Close Jan. 1st--Advices from Sacramento state that it is probable that the bill to close Eel river to all net fishing will pass, the closing to become effective January 1st, 1922.


The net fishermen have asked for this extension of time to allow them to dispose of their equipment without unnecessary loss, and there appears to be no disposition on the part of those advocating the closing of the river to attempt to have the bill effective immediately.


If the bill is made effective January 1st next, the fishermen will be allowed one more netting season, and will also be in a position to dispose of their equipment to the best possible advantage.


FE (1 April 1921) The Day the Issac Waltons look for--The day the disciples of Isaac Walton have long been looking forward to has arrived. Today is April 1st, the opening day of the trout season.


Owing to the fact that the creeks have been high a goodly part of the winter, allowing the trout to get up the streams easily, the anglers are anticipating an unusually large supply of trout and excellent sport. Most of the creeks have cleared up sufficiently this week to allow of good fishing, though some of the streams are yet considerably discolored. This evening and tomorrow we will all hear of the big catches, as well as the big ones which got away, and from now on life will again be worth living for the angler.


FE (8 April 1921) Few big Catches on Opening Day--The trout season opened last Friday and many anglers lined the banks of the streams in this valley. Most of the creeks were too muddy for good fishing and but few large catches were reported...


FE (8 April 1921) Would Prohibit use of Spawn as Bait--L.E. Fagan of Fortuna would prohibit the use of salmon spawn as bait for trout fishing in Eel river. In a communication to the Fortuna Advance he sets forth his views as follows:

"In a recent issue of a county daily newspaper, I notice a statement that steps should be taken to prevent fishing out of season if Humboldt county is to remain the Angler's Paradise it is at present.


"May I suggest that something more is needed, or soon will be, if Humboldt is to remain an Angler's Paradise. The thing to do is to put a stop to the use of salmon eggs as bait and to prohibit their sale for that purpose.


"Now that there will be more and more visitors with motor cars, tourists, most of them armed with poles and cans of salmon spawn--just try to figure out the number of salmon trout and young steelhead that will be taken daily from the rivers. It will astonish you. There is a so-called limit, but how few keep it. Read an article by John Ballard in the November issue of 'Outers Recreation,' and it will give you some idea of the destruction caused by rapid transit and the use of bait all day and every day. By bait I mean the deadly salmon roe or eggs. Let those who are too lazy or stupid to fly fish use worms, cheese or paste, anything but salmon eggs.


"In the British Isles where the question of restocking depleted rivers is a serious one, the use and sale of salmon roe is prohibited and its use or sale is heavily punished. Smolts or salmon parr are also prohibited, but as there are no other fish except migratory ones in the river the article in question refers to, that could hardly be done here.


"There has been an outcry agains the 'commercial fishermen' of late in the press and I gather that netting is to be stopped in tidal waters. Why? What good will that do when no steps are taken to prevegnt wholesale destruction of immature fish.


"Nowhere in England or Scotland is legitimate netting prohibited and I claim that enough fish, both salmon and steelhead, to restock the rivers would get up during the Saturday and Sunday the nets are off, even should none get up other days. Of course some get up all the time.


"What you have got to stop is the habit of the so-called sportsmen who camp on a hole and fish it out, using salmon egg bait. Any angler will tell you that fish cannot be caught all the time with fly, or even with worm. Conditions must be suitable and blank days are frequent, but with salmon eggs as bait fish can be taken at any time during day or night.


"From what I have seen on Eel river it is a stream that could easily keep itself stocked naturally without any help from a hatchery if the slaughter of millions of immature fish was put a stop to. The money now wasted on hatcheries could be more profitably spent in providing watchers to see that 'poachers' are kept off and that the laws to 'limits' and fishing season are strictly enforced. Let the commercial fishermen carry on their lawful business--they'll not hurt the fishing--it's the 'trout hog' who does the mischief.


"Very truly yours, L.E. Fagan."


FE (15 April 1921) At the meeting of the Ferndale Chamber of Commerce last Monday evening...a resolution was adopted favoring the closing of Eel river to net fishing, and a telegram was ordered sent to Sacramento outlining the Chamber's position.


FE (6 May 1921) Assemblyman F.J. Cummings Returns--Assemblyman Frank J. Cummings returned to his home on the Island Monday evening from Sacramento...


Mr. Cummings states that the bill to close Eel river to all net fishing passed both houses and is now in the hands of the Governor. If signed by him it will become effective on the first of next January.


FE (13 May 1921) Weymouth Inn to open next Sunday--The popular Weymouth Inn at Price Creek will be reopened next Sunday for the summer. Under the management of Mr. and Mrs. Reidy this old-time resort has steadily grown in popularity and patronage and is now recognized as the leading resort of northern California.


With the splendid sport furnished anglers by the famous Waymouth pool, the natural beauty of the surroundings and the fine service offered at the Inn, the patronage has grown from year to year until now its fame has spread all over California...


FE (1 July 1921) Many Salmon Being Caught Offshore--Between 50 and 60 tons of salmon were caught Saturday by Noyo fishermen, this being the record catch of the season.


The best catches were made between Cleone and Ten Mile although boats fishing as far north as Westport and as far southh as Albion made fair catches. The salmon this year are said to be larger and more plentiful than last year. About 15 tons of Saturday's catch was shipped to San Francisco fresh. Bill Nye is said to have made the largest single handed catch of 1,785 pounds, and there were many boats which brought in over 1,000 pounds each. Figuring on a basis of 7 cents per pound, Saturday's catch netted the fishermen at least $7,000.--Fort Bragg Advocate.


FE (9 Sept. 1921) Two Million Pounds of Salmon Caught Offshore--Approximately 2,000,000 pounds of salmon were caught by the Noyo offshore fishing industry this year.

As a whole, the catch was considerably below that of last year. The season opened up strong and some record catches were made during the month of June. High winds practically stopped fishing in July and the catch in August was light. Of the total, 500 cases weighing 825 pounds each were mild cured, 1,000 cases were canned and the remainder shipped to the San Francisco fresh fish market.


A disappointing feature of this year's catch is that nearly 60 percent was small fish, most of which were sold on the fresh fish market at a low figure. Last year only about 30 percent of the catch ran to small fish. Another peculiar feature is that comparatively few fish were taken at Shelter Cove this season as compared to a big run there last year. At the height of the season there were about 500 boats engaged in fishing out of Noyo.--Fort Bragg Advocate.


HT (25 Sept. 1921) First Annual Report Eureka Chamber of Commerce, Oct. 1920-Oct. 1921. Eel River Closed to Commercial Fishing:

Co-operating with the State Fish and Game Commission in its fight for better protection to the sport fishing of the state, the Eureka Chamber of Commerce, through the Fish and Game Commission, conducted a highly successful campaign for the closing of the Eel river to commercial fishermen.

Sport fishing has long been one of our greatest attractions...unless immediate steps were taken to curb the useless waste of commercial fishing methods. After three trips to Sacramento by the committee and the carrying out [of] a well organized fight, the bill was passed and [becomes] effective at the close of the present season...


BLA (1 Oct. 1921) A steelhead trout, measuring 34 inches in length and 18 inches in girth and weighing 14 1\4 pounds, was hooked and landed after a fight of 20 minutes by Joseph Gephart of Eureka at Fernbridge Sunday. The fish, which is the largest caught on a fly in Eel River for the past five years, has been entered in the "biggest fish" contest being conducted by Field and Stream sporting magazine. It was caught on a No. 10 Parmachenee Belle fly and was on display Monday at Sam Wells' sporting goods store on F street, Eureka.


FE (7 Oct. 1921) Salmon Trollers have poor Sport--So far this season there has been no large run of salmon in Eel river and the season has afforded the poorest sport to trollers within the memory of the oldest inhabitant. Why this should be no one knows, but the general opinion is that the salmon supply has been sadly depleted through the operations of the off-shore fishermen the past few years.


The commercial fishing season opened last night at midnight but is not likely to prove a profitable one to the fishermen who will be on the river with their nets. The fly fishermen on the river have been having rather poor sport of late, as the half-pounders, or salmon trout, are not nearly so numerous as in past years, though occasionally a good catch is reported. Steelheads have not been numerous the past few weeks, but at present many chubs are being taken, both on the fly and the troll.

It is predicted that with the first rain which will cause the river to rise a few inches there will be many more fish come into the river and that better sport will be afforded.

FE (2 Dec. 1921) Second prize for the largest rainbow trout caught in the western division of the United States has been awarded by the Field and Stream magazine to Joe Gephart of Eureka...The fish which brought Gephart this recognition weighed 14 1\4 pounds, was 34 inches long and 18 inches around. It was landed in Eel river some time ago.


FE (16 Dec. 1921) Good sport has been enjoyed at Weymouths and other pools up Eel river since the river cleared last week. Quite a few steelheads and salmon trout have been taken by the anglers. Most of the fish have been taken on the troll or bait, though occasionally one is taken on the fly.


FE (17 Feb. 1922) New Fish and Game Club is Organized--At a meeting of representatives from all parts of the county, held in Eureka last Friday evening, the Humboldt County Fish and Game Association was organized with a membership of 400, which makes it the largest of its kind in the state...

This association is formed for the purpose of propagating and protecting fish and game in Humboldt county and suggesting the enactment of laws beneficial to this state; and to promote good fellowship among its members...


FE (28 April 1922) The Trout Season Opens next Monday--Next Monday, May 1st, is the opening day of the trout season in this county. The opening day is a month later than usual, the season having started April 1st for the past several years.

The small creeks will doubtless receive the greater part of the attention of anglers on opening day, as the rivers are yet too high for good fishing... Owing to the high water which has prevailed during the winter the creeks should be well stocked with trout and some good catches are looked for on the opening day.

J.A. Shaw of Oakland, who has disputed the championship with R.L. Jacobsen of Ferndale on opening day for several years past, will not be here this year and Mr. Jacobsen will carry off the honors over his rival without competition.


FE (5 May 1922) Few Trout Taken on Opening Day--The trout season opened last Monday and most of the local disciples of Isaac Walton were out along the banks of the different small streams of this vicinity. Fish were rather scarce, however, for the opening day, and not many good catches are reported. Whether the season opened too late or whether conditions otherwise were not right is a point of argument.

Within a few weeks the larger streams will be right for fly fishing and then good sport is to be expected. At present there is too much water in Eel river, the Van Duzen and even the smaller mountain streams, but by the latter part of the month conditions should be right everywhere.


FE (19 May 1922) The following issued by the California State Fish and Game Commission....Extensive egg-collecting equipment was installed during the fall of 1921 on the South Fork of Eel river, near Branscomb. Racks, traps, holding pens and cabins for the assistants have been put in on the South Fork Eel River. Racks and traps have also been placed in Charlie Creek, and on the Kenney Creek, an eyeing station has been put in and racks, traps, pens, etc., installed. The station has been equipped for extensive operations and it is the intention to collect the eggs of the steelhead trout as well as those of salmon.


FE (19 May 1922) Price Creek and Fort Seward Fish Hatcheries--History of the operations at Price Creek and Fort Seward fish hatcheries in this county is given in the current issue of "California Fish and Game," the official publication of the Fish and Game Commission:

"In its endeavor to increase the salmon supply in California, the Commission investigated conditions on Eel river, and in 1897, a hatchery was erected on Price Creek, one of the tributaries of Eel river, about twelve miles from its mouth. The first eggs were shipped from Battle Creek to the new station in December of that year. This station proved to be a great success. Eel river, like the headwaters of the Sacramento, has no predatory fish except the trout to devour the salmon fry.

The water of the river from the mouth of Price Creek to the ocean flows through deep pools with very little current. The salmon fry find perfect conditions in this stretch of water, and enter the ocean with very little loss and in fine condition. This station has also been used for collecting and hatching steelhead eggs for distribution in the streams in Humboldt county. The increase of salmon in Eel river, following the establishment of this station is another example of the benefit derived from artificial propagation. At the time the first salmon fry from the hatchery were liberated in Eel river during the spring of 1898, the average annual shipment of salmon from Eureka was about 500,000 pounds. After the establishment of the hatchery there was a steady increase, and in 1904 the shipment was over 1,500,000 pounds.

"In 1902 this hatchery made the first plant in the state of steelhead trout fry. After the spring of 1906, when the restriction prohibiting netting became effective, there was a marked increase apparent. In operating one small trap on Price Creek (which was at different times flooded) the largest number of steelhead eggs ever taken in Humboldt county was secured.


"Owing to the undesirable location of the Price Creek Hatchery, it was decided to remove it to a more favorable site...The Department of Fish Culture was instructed to select a suitable site and to move the station. After a careful survey of the stream on the line of the Northwestern Pacific Railroad, Fort Seward Creek was selected, a cold, clear stream, flowing into Eel river and about four and one-half miles above old Fort Seward, Humboldt County...


"Early in 1916 the work of moving the building and equipment to the new site on Fort Seward Creek was begun, being completed and ready for the spring hatch of eggs. A cottage for the superintendent and a cabin for the men were erected and finished in a rough way until more comfortable quarters could be arranged.


"The hatchery building is situated near the creek in a canyon and the superintendent's dwelling on an eminence overlooking the hatchery. As funds were limited at the time the hatchery was established, only a poorly constructed cabin could be built for the help besides the cottage for the superintendent. During the fall of 1919, two, four-room cottages of plain interior finish and shingled outside were built, so that men with families could be employed.


"The water in Fort Seward Creek is the only water suitable for hatchery purposes on the line of the Northwestern Pacific Railroad. There are several streams between South Fork station and Fortuna, but they all have their sources in the same sedimentary formation as Price Creek where it was necessary to abandon the hatchery owing to the great amount of sediment carried in the water during the winter and spring, when the rainy season was at its height. The fry produced at this hatchery are the best reared in any of the hatcheries in the coast counties."


FE (15 Sept. 1922) President A.E. Dalton of the Humboldt Fish and Game Association has received a telegram from the State Fish and Game Commission stating that 250,000 steelhead and 2,000,000 salmon had been planted in Eel river this year, contradicting reports that the stream had been neglected this season.


FE (29 Sept. 1922) The salmon trollers report poor sport in Eel river the last few days. The fish that came in have not been numerous and have seemed to get directly up the river, where they seldom bite the troll.


FE (6 Oct. 1922) Many salmon are reported in Eel river this week and trollers have been taking a few. The fish are not taking the troll as well as usual this year, for some reason which old time fishermen are unable to account for. The spearers have been having good sport since the rain of the past few days which started the fish up the river.


FE (6 Oct. 1922) A salmon weighing 63 pounds was speared near Fernbridge last Wednesday morning by a Loleta man. The fish was 48 inches in length with other measurements in proportion, and was one of the biggest ever taken in Eel river.


FE (13 Oct. 1922) Fisherman Fined for Selling Untagged Salmon--Lawrence Carroll, Eel river fisherman, pleaded guilty before Judge Adams of Eureka Wednesday to a violation of the Fish and Game Law and was given the minimum sentence under the law, $100 fine or one day in prison for each $2 of the fine unpaid. Carroll was arrested Monday by Game Warden Theodore Benson for violation of the law which requires that all salmon sold to markets must previously be inspected and tagged by the game warden. Defendant was charged with having sold a quantity of uninspected and untagged salmon to the California Fish market of Eureka last Sunday. In default of paying the fine, Carroll was remanded to jail.



FE (27 Oct. 1922) Ellis Robinson Denies Illegal Fishing Reports--


Ellis Robinson was a caller at this office the first of the week and authorized the Advance to state that he wants no more rumors circulated to the effect that he is taking fish with nets in Eel river, which is a violation of the state law. Mr. Robinson stated that he had found two nets which had been illegally set in the river and had turned them over to the game wardens.

"I have not engaged in fishing unlawfully with nets nor do I countenance it with others. I am tired of hearing these rumors of illegal fishing on my part when I am doing all that I can to help enforce the game laws and if I hear any more of it I shall prosecute those who circulate such rumors. I did not favor the closing of the river to commercial fishing but it is closed now by law and I believe in obeying this law to the letter. I shall content myself with hook and line fishing and catch as many as the other fellow."--Fortuna Advance.


FE (24 Nov. 1922) Eel river has been in good condition for the trollers during the past week and some fine catches of salmon, steelheads and half-pounders are reported from the upper pools.


FE (24 Nov. 1922) The crab season in Eel river is again open and some good catches have been made of late by local people. Crabs are reported more numerous this season than for many years past.


FE (1 Dec. 1922) Salmon Fishery in Danger--The salmon catch in California this year has been so poor that most salmon fishermen and fish dealers are now convinced that the salmon have been overfished and that radical fishing restrictions must be adopted if we are to save the remnant of the run of this valuable fish. The efforts of the Fish and Game Commission during the past several years to restrict the catch have been opposed by both river and ocean fishermen as well as by some of the fish dealers. This opposition, aided by lobbists at Sacramento, has so far prevented proper legislation. If radical measures are not taken at the next meeting of the State Legislature to further protect the salmon we are sure to see the same old story enacted again of actions being taken only after the species has become commercially extinct.--California Fish and Game Commission.


FE (1 Dec. 1922) The fly fishermen have been enjoying fine sport on Eel river during the past week, many steelhead and half-pounders having been taken.


FE (29 Dec. 1922) Net Marked Fish Taken on Trolls--Eel river had cleared sufficiently the latter part of the week to permit trolling in the upper pools and a number of fine steelhead were taken. Anglers report that a number of the fish caught were badly scarred up by net marks showing that somehwere in the stream gillnets have been operating in defiance of the law.


FE (30 March 1923) Laws Favored by Fish Commission--The Fish and Game Commission after careful investigation believes that the following changes in the fish and game laws should be made by the legislature in order to properly conserve the species concerned:


"The status of the salmon makes it imperative that all netting of this fish in freshwater streams be prohibited. The marked depletion of the salmon run has conclusively proved that the recommendations to past sessions of the legislature relative to netting in freshwater were entirely justified and the perpetuation of this valued food fish is dependent upon increased protection of this sort. Additional legislation is necessary to conserve the salmon run on the Klamath river, which furnishes the only satisfactory supply of salmon eggs for use of the hatcheries.


"The demand for an increased angling license to furnish funds for a larger output of trout fry should receive favorable action by the legislature. In 1911 applications for trout fry to the mount of 7,000,000 were made. This past year the demand was for 70,000,000 trout fry, an amount far in excess of the present hatchery output. It must be conceded that a greater hatchery output is needed to keep the streams of the state stocked, and the only possible way in which this can be increased is by making funds available for enlarging the work. Since the increase is demanded by the anglers themselves, thus making the burden fall on those who will most profit, and not upon the taxpayer, no difficulty should be experienced in passing the necessary legislation."


FE (13 April 1923) W.O. Fassett is Called by Death--W.O. Fassett, for many years in charge of the Price Creek fish hatchery, and more recently of Ukiah, where he was in charge of the northern division of the state fish and game work, died in that city last Tuesday of heart failure. The remains were taken to Vallejo and the funeral will be held in that city today.


Decedent was aged [61] years. He is survived by his wife, who was formerly Miss Mary Weymouth of Grizzly Bluff, and a son, Weymouth Fassett, aged about 22 years.


FE (4 May 1923) The attention of anglers is called to the fact that the limit on trout is 25 fish or ten pounds and one fish. There are many people, apparently, who think that the limit is still 50 fish, as it was up to a couple of years ago.


FE (25 May 1923) Sam Wells Writes of Fishing Laws--Sam Wells, who with Milton Carson and Joe Gephart was arrested by Game Warden Benson and charged with having violated the fishing laws by taking more than the limit of three salmon, has written the following letter to the Humboldt Standard regarding the matter:


"Inasmuch as there has been so much talk recently in reference to a so-called violation of the Fish and Game Laws, as referred to salmon in this district, and through which Jos. Gephart, J.M. Carson and the writer were the prominent characters in this respect, I felt it would [be] well through the columns of your paper to enlighten the general public why we have decided to plead not guilty in this particular violation as interpreted by only one of our three game wardens in this county.


"If we allow this particular case to go through the court unchallenged and were convicted of this section of the Penal Code, it would create a precedent for the arrest of every angler, man, woman, and child, who desired to fish in any of the tributaries or rivers emptying into the Pacific Ocean, unless they engaged the services of an expert to classify the fish they had caught after a day's sport.


"The law specifies that you shall take but three salmon on any one calendar day. It does not mention size, so if you were found with four or more of these small salmon in your basket, even if only 4 or 5 inches long, you would be subject to arrest and it is impossible for anyone to fish these streams without having 25 to 50 percent salmon. Do we want our anglers of Humboldt county when they are fishing these streams, getting the limit of 25 and working with that limit to feel if they should meet a game warden they had (ignorant of the fact themselves) more than three salmon in their basket?


"And furthermore the commercial fisherman can fish in the Pacific Ocean and bring in as many tons of salmon and be within the law.


"Why should this law be enforced now, where no action had been taken in the last ten years that it has been on the statute books? I will answer this by saying that the majority of the game wardens have interpreted this law as it was meant, which was to protect the salmon of 10 to 50 pounds when they were going to their spawning grounds as parent fish, but not for those small salmon known as charr [?] and when a little older up to 12 or 14 inches as grilse.


"Fourteen baskets of trout that have been brought to my place of business for inspection in the last two weeks have all contained more than the limit of salmon. This law is not only detrimental to our home folks but through the notoriety it has been given has been the means of turning the many tourists who enjoy fishing the streams of Humboldt county to other parts of the state.


"Only last week several of our most well known anglers in gum boots and oilskin coats devoted their time up to midnight gratis in planting 250,000 salmon fry in the streams tributary to Humboldt Bay and we feel under these circumstances that a minority of the game wardens in this county should interpret this law as it was meant the same as the majority. Thank you, I remain very truly yours, Sam Wells."


FE (8 June 1923) A large number of steelhead were planted in Eel river this week from the Steelhead hatchery...


FE (13 July 1923) The annual run of steelhead is reported in Eel river but as yet they are not taking the fly well. A few are reported to have been taken on the spinner.


FE (10 Aug. 1923) A well attended meeting of the Humboldt County Fish and Game Association was held last Tuesday...The matter of Eel river near Pleasant Point being blocked by the old jetty there was taken up and an effort will be made to have the Fish and Game Commission keep the stream open by the establishment of a fish ladder or in any other way deemed advisable...


FE (7 Sept. 1923) There has been a large run of salmon trout in Eel river the last couple of weeks, the fish appearing more plentiful than for many years past. The anglers have been having fine sport in all the pools along the river.


FE (28 Sept. 1923) Salmon fishing has been fairly good in Eel river the past week, the fish taking the troll more readily than earlier in the season.


FE (26 Oct. 1923) Commission Eulogizes late W.O. Fassett--In the current number of "California Fish and Game," published by the State Fish and Game Commission, is found the following eulogy of the late W.O. Fassett, for many years in charge of the Price Creek hatchery and well known in Ferndale and Eel river valley, where he had a host of friends:


"Willard Odion Fassett departed this life April 10, 1923. He was a son of the late Thomas Odion Fassett, U.S.N., and Susan Knight Fassett. He was born April 4, 1862, at Brooklyn, New York, and came to San Francisco with his parents in 1867. Later the family moved to Vallejo.


"Mr. Fassett graduated from the Vallejo High School in 1879. Shortly after this he entered the service of the United States Navy as a machinist apprentice in the steam engineering department at Mare Island, where he completed his apprenticeship and was employed for a number of years at the trade in the government service. He was a lover of nature and the great out-of-doors had a fascination for him.


"He entered the employ of the California Fish and Game Commission as an apprentice fish culturist in 1896 at the Battle Creek salmon cultural station. Thereafter he took an active part in all departments of fish cultural operations, having been employed as foreman of the Commission's egg collecting station at Verdi, Nevada, as foreman and assistant in fish cultural operations under E.W. Hunt at the Tahoe stations, and as messenger in distribution work and other capacities at the Sisson hatchery, Klamath river stations and other hatcheries and egg collecting stations. Mr. Fassett was appointed superintendent of the Price Creek hatchery in Humboldt county in 1900, where he was in charge during all the years that this station was in operation. It was a hard station to operate owing to the friable nature of the soil through which Price Creek flowed, forming immense deposits of earthly matter in the water supply that caused many days and nights of anxiety on his part lest the fish and eggs in his charge be destroyed.


"When the Price Creek hatchery was abandoned in 1915 and the new hatchery near Ft. Seward established, Mr. Fassett was placed in charge of the new station. In 1920 Mr. Fassett was placed in charge of the northwestern division of the Fish and Game Commission's fish cultural operations, which included all the stations in Mendocino and Humboldt counties, consisting of Ft. Seward hatchery, Ukiah hatchery, Snow Mountain Egg Collecting station, and the experimental station near Branscomb on the South Fork of the Eel river. Mr. Fassett continued in charge of these stations until the date of his demise.


"Mr. Fassett was a loyal and faithful employee of the Fish and Game Commission. He never neglected the most exacting duties connected with his work, always having in mind the success of his undertakings. His knowledge of the natural history of the different species of fishes that he handled in his work was of great value to him and assisted greatly in the success that he made of his fish cultural work. His mechanical training was of great assistance in the construction work at the different stations that were under his charge. Untiring in his efforts in all lines of fish culture, conscientious and dependable at all times, he was one of the old, faithful employees of the Fish and Game Commission, who made the work of the Commission known all over the country for its efficiency.


"Mr. Fassett was married to Mary E. Weymouth in San Francisco September 3, 1899. He leaves to mourn his loss his wife, one son, Weymouth Fassett, two brothers Thomas and Phillip Fassett of San Francisco, besides a host of friends, for his genial nature, generous disposition, and his charity toward all men made him loved and respected by all who knew him.


"In the passing of Willard Fassett the state has lost a good citizen, his wife and son a kind and loving husband and father and the Commission a dependable and faithful employee."


FE (2 Nov. 1923) The salmon trollers have been having good sport on Eel river during the past week, particularly at the Ellery pool.


FE (16 Nov. 1923) Eel River Salmon Taken by Netters--Reports continue to come into the Enterprise office that gillnetters are operating nearly every night on Eel river and that many tons of salmon have been taken from that stream this year in violation of the law which prohibits all netting on this stream.


Nets have been seen in the river by numerous parties, and trucks have been seen hauling fish away, according to good authority. In fact, about everybody concedes that there is much illegal fishing being done with nets. It is understood that the Humboldt County Fish and Game Association is working to secure a rigid enforcement of the law, but so far apparently without results.

The matter has been brought to the attention of the Fish and Game Association of the state by visiting sportsmen who witnessed the law violation while they were camped on the lower river, and the Commission in a letter to a Ferndale merchant pledged itself to see that the law is enforced. Local people are unanimous in demanding that the Commission put more deputies on Eel river if the present deputies cannot handle the situation.


FE (29 Dec. 1923) A. Rosaia Arrested for Shipping Trout--A. Rosaia, of the Rosaia Fish Co., Eureka, was taken before Justice A.B. Adams Friday by Game Warden Earl Barnes on a charge of offering for shipment to San Francisco, a quantity of salmon trout. The fish, which were seized on the wharf packed in ice, were brought into court as evidence.


The shipment was such a large one that after the court attaches had cut off the heads, tails, and fins, the fish nearly filled a 50-gallon whiskey barrel and required a hundred pounds of rock salt to pickle them in order to preserve them for evidence at the trial later. Rosaia was released on $100 bail, which amount, in the shape of a check, he held in his hand when he was brought before the court. A stiff jail sentence would be the proper penalty for anyone found guilty of netting salmon trout.


FE (4 Jan. 1924) The open season for trout and steelhead fishing ended last Monday night in this district. It is now illegal to take anything but salmon, on which there is a limit of three per day. Eel river is muddy and the anglers' sport for the season seems ended. The trout season will open again on May 1st.


FE (14 March 1924) Improvements at Weymouth Inn--Weymouth Inn, the popular fishing resort at Price Creek conducted by Mr. and Mrs. M. Reidy, is being enlarged and improved in preparation for the coming season...

Weymouth Inn grows in popularity every year and for several seasons back has been filled to its capacity nearly the entire season, though it has been enlarged several times. It is easily one of the most popular fishing resorts in northern California...


FE (25 April 1924) Trout Season Opens Thursday, May 1st.--Next Thursday, May 1st, is the date the disciples of Isaac Walton have been looking forward to for many long months. On that date the fishing season opens and the hearts of the Waltonians will be glad...


FE (2 May 1924) Fishing Season Opened Yesterday--The fishing season opened yesterday, May 1st, and the many trout streams in this county were lined with anglers. The day was observed as a holiday in Ferndale, the stores and business houses being closed, and dozens of our people went fishing...


FE (9 May 1924) Drought Menaces Trout Streams of California--That the present dry season menaces the work of keeping the trout streams of California stocked with fish is stated in a report given out by the California Fish and Game Commission. The report states:


"That fishing interests are seriously menaced on account of the drouth does not seem to be so well understood by the public as is the effect upon agricultural, horticultural and dairying interests, but in reality present drouth conditions will greatly curtail the fish cultural activities of the Commission and increase the difficulties and problems confronting that department. Not only will it be impossible to provide the normal amount of fishing, but it will also be out of the question to stock new streams. Indeed, in many places it will be a problem to maintain sufficient stocks of fish to assure a normal supply for another season..


"From present indications, the take of eggs this year will amount to only about half of the number taken last year. At Cape Horn Dam on the South Fork of Eel River, not a single egg will be taken this season, as the small amount of water now running in the river above the Gravelly Valley Dam is all being impounded for irrigation. This same condition prevails in other parts of the state. At the Domingo Springs Egg Collecting Station, where early in March the snow is usually from four to ten feet in depth, this year at the same time the roads in the vicinity of Chester were dusty and only a few patches of snow remained in the deep timber on the high altitudes. The streams are as low as they usually are in the month of August. If fishing for the limit is allowed to continue, the task of restocking streams throughout the state will be almost impossible of accomplishment."


FE (25 July 1924) Many people have been at the mouth of Eel river crab fishing during the past week. Crabs are unusually plentiful and the fishermen have been successful in getting all they desired. The season for taking crabs closes the last of this month.


FE (1 Aug. 1924) A stretch of Eel river between Palmer Creek and Pleasant Point was reported dry last week for a distance of about 200 feet, there being only a slight seepage beneath the gravel. M. Reidy of the Weymouth Resort had a channel plowed through the gravel so that fish might get up the stream. There are several places on the river where large fish will have difficulty in getting up this season. This is the first time, so far as can be learned, when there has been a stretch of the stream dry, however.


FE (15 Aug. 1924) The annual run of salmon trout has commenced in Eel river and anglers have been enjoying good sport the past week. There are also some salmon in the river, though it is unusually early for the regular run.


FE (22 Aug. 1924) No Half-pounders Getting up River--The late rain had no appreciable effect on Eel river and the stream is still impassable for the fish attempting to get up. Above Palmer Creek it is dry and the large run of half-pounders in the river is confined to the lower stretches. Some steelhead are being taken from the upper pools but these are fish which got up some time ago before the water was so low.


There has been talk of again plowing out a channel to allow the fish to go up and it is hoped this can be done. Game Warden Barnes has reported to President Dalton of the Humboldt County Fish and Game Association that in his opinion this would not be practical, he believing that it would only have the effect of draining the pool above and then close again.


There is a difference of opinion on this subject, some holding that opening the channel would have no appreciable effect on the pool as there is a considerable seepage under the gravel all the time and that not much more water would go out if it were running above ground. In the meantime all the half-pounders or salmon trout are in the lower stretches of the river and incidentally about all the fishermen in the county are to be found there as well.


FE (12 Sept. 1924) Mrs. Van Riper of Newcastle was successful last Tuesday in landing a 38-pound salmon from Eel river. This is the biggest fish of the season so far reported, as the run is just commencing...


FE (21 Nov. 1924) Eel river cleared up sufficiently the last of the week to permit trolling and some good catches have been reported, particularly in the Weymouth pool.


FE (1 May 1925) Trout Season Opens Today--Today, May 1st, is the big day to which the disciples of Izaak Walton look forward during the long winter months, for today is the opening of the trout season.

While most of the larger streams are too high and roily for good trout fishing, many of the smaller creeks will be in good condition and should furnish plenty of sport. Many local anglers will be found along the nearby creeks, while there will be some who will go to Bear river and the Mattole river...

Owing to the heavy rainfall this winter and the late rains which have permitted the fish to get into all the streams, the prospects are bright for the best fishing this season in a number of years. Tonight there will be some interesting stories told of the big ones which got away and maybe some full baskets will be on display.


FE (8 May 1925) Three Years Work of Humboldt Fish & Game Association--The annual report of Secretary C.I. Clay of the Humboldt Fish and Game Association contains an interesting summary of the work of the Association in the three years since its organization as follows:

"During the past three years the Association has planted 2,051,620 chinook salmon and 3,272,020 trout of the various species in the waters of Humboldt county...Various interests have sought to open the Eel river to commercial fishing with the net and we have either quieted or blocked every effort on the part of those active ones who have attempted such a move. Their arguments seemed good and their intentions were sincere, but they have not come to the realization that the time of preservation of the people's resources has its ultimate turning point and that the cause of conservation of our game resources must act under the guidance of scientific knowledge, lest the game itself shall perish from the face of the earth. Our Association started the movement towards the coalition of the people of all Humboldt county in a movement to save Eel river from a diversion scheme to the Russian river water-shed and through that coalition the movement of the Snow Mountain Water and Power Company to divert Eel river was blocked and it is safe to say will never take those waters on a southern journey.

"The Association has removed an obstacle at the jetty-pool in Eel river, which was blocking the fish from ascending that stream during the low-water period..."


FE (15 May 1925) Says Eel River Half Pounder is Steelhead Trout--In the current number of "California Fish and Game," the official publication of the California Fish and Game Commission, appears an interesting article from the pen of John O. Snyder of Stanford University regarding the fish known locally as the half-pounder, which enters Eel river in large numbers every fall and which has always been the subject for a division of opinion regarding its species.

Prof. Snyder claims that the half-pounder is in reality a young steelhead trout. Excerpts from his article which follow will be read with interest by all anglers:

"Early in the fall of the year there appears in Eel river a migration of steelheads locally known as 'half-pounders.' Their entry into the river and progress up the stream seem to depend somewhat upon the flow of the water, which may be greatly reduced during the periods of drought. They are usually present in the lower reaches of the river in considerable numbers from the first of October until about the middle of November, when high water permits them to pass up stream. While yet fairly fresh from the ocean, bright, silvery in color, sometimes with a flush of pink, along their sides, plump, solid and full of energy, they are sought by many anglers, some of whom have come from long distances.


"Among these fishermen one occasionally hears more or less protracted discussion as to whether the fish are trout or steelheads, whether they belong to the same species as the larger steelheads which enter the river, whether they differ from the smaller stream trout, whether they differ from the steelheads of other rivers, what is a steelhead, anyway, etcetera.


"The purpose of this article is to present the results of a brief study of these fish and to attempt an answer to some of the queries relating to them. In California the term steelhead is commonly used to designate a trout that has come into a river from the sea. Such a trout, usually of considerable size, appears with others in a regular migration at a more or less definite time. For example, a migration of such fish takes place in the Klamath River during the summer and early fall. The fish appear late in July, become abundant in August and September, after which the migration rapidly declines. They pass up the river in great numbers. Some turn into various tributaries, while others pursue the main channel as far as they are able to go.

"The steelhead migration coincides in a general way with that of the king salmon, not only in its rise and decline, but in its periodical irregularities, as well, a large wave of steelheads being often associated with a similarly large wave of salmon.

"As the steelheads appear fresh from the ocean, sometimes bearing living parasitic crustaceans attached to their bodies, they are of a beautiful steel blue above, with highly burnished silvery sides. They usually have very definite black spots on the head and body; spots are always present on the dorsal, adipose and caudal, while the remaining fins are immaculate. Sometimes the head is without spots, and the body has very few. The spots of the head are almost always round, while those of the body are elongate and linear. The ova found in these fish are very small, their undeveloped condition giving rise to the suggestion that the steelheads have entered upon a very long migration, or at least a considerable sojourn in fresh water, and this has been found to be true. Their stomachs are usually empty, and they seem to remain so while they are in the estuary of the river. A little farther up stream their appetites appear to return, and their behavior is governed accordingly. They snap a fly or a spoon with avidity and they severely test the angler's skill in the rapid water.

"About the middle of August steelheads that have begun to assume their nuptial colors are occasionally seen in the estuary. The cheeks become tinted with pink, and a broad dorsal area loses its marine hue and becomes a light olive. Salt water crustacea are not found attached to such individuals, and it seems probable that they have been in the river for some time. When fresh from the ocean the steelheads may often be seen in numbers leaping high from the water and falling with a great splash. They seem fairly intoxicated with their new experience in the stream.

"In their progress up the river these fish slowly assume the well known color characteristics of the brook trout, and as the spawning period approaches they become very brilliant. Steelheads enter all California streams which are large enough, sometimes appearing where the volume of water is scarcely sufficient to carry them. These fish have come to the fresh water to spawn, and unless prevented in some way, most of them will accomplish their purpose and eventually return to the ocean. Some die, perhaps from injury, lack of food, old age, or because of a weakened condition after the unusual exertion incident to migration and spawning. A few remain for an indefinite time in the rivers. In many of the larger streams are trout of considerable size which appear to be resident there, and which may never have gone to sea and some of these have received specific names.

"In the Sacramento, and in all streams which enter the ocean to the southward, the steelheads appear to be of one species. They do not differ from, but are identical with the stream trout, Salmo irideus Ayres. A brief study of their scales reveals the fact that many of them have lived in the stream for from one to two or even more years before entering the ocean. Some of them have also performed three or more successful spawning migrations.

"In the streams of the northern part of the state, the sea-run trout are found to belong to two species. By far the largest number are Salmo irideus, but amongst these may occasionally be seen an example of the cutthroat trout, Salmo clarkii Richardson. In general appearance the two resemble each other rather closely, when fresh from the sea. The latter may be distinguished by their smaller scales, there being from 160 to 200 in the lateral series. S. irideus has from 110 to 145 or so. Apparently the cutthroat trout do not migrate far up stream in this latitude.

"It will be seen then that one may speak with perfect propriety of rainbow steelheads (S. irideus) and cutthroat steelheads (S. clarkii), while in the hands of the angler the steelhead becomes a rainbow trout, or a cutthroat trout when the brilliant stream colors of the fish have been sufficiently developed. Sometimes steelheads are found far up stream, their silvery marine color having not yet changed. These appear to have proceeded quickly up the river after having entered its mouth.

"Steelheads are sometimes caught in the ocean. They are then always steel blue above, and bright silvery on the sides, the red longitudinal stripe being entirely subdued. The steelhead-rainbow controversy is still much alive with some anglers, and indeed some ichthyologists may not agree with what has been written here, preferring to believe that the steelhead represents a species entirely distinct from the rainbow trout. From a careful examination of many trout from our coastal stream, I am convinced that the coarse scaled steelhead and the rainbow trout are identical. Some of the misunderstanding comes from a confusion of terms, the fishes themselves being lost sight of in a mist of nomenclature.

"Last fall fourteen samples of the Eel river half-pounder were caught by Mr. W.G. Morse in a pool near Fern Bridge. These were preserved by Mr. T.M. Benson and shipped to Stanford University. They were typical steelhead trout, resembling in every way steelheads of similar size from other streams which enter the ocean immediately north or south of Eel river. All the anatomical characters which one is accustomed to regard as of importance in distinguishing trout species are apparently identical with those of larger steelheads and also of the small stream trout in the river. Furthermore these steelheads do not seem to differ from the coarse scaled steelheads of Klamath river.

"It appears without doubt that the half-pounder is a young steelhead, approximately three years old, which has entered the river on its first nuptial migration. If it successfully spawns and escapes the dangers of the river it may return again and again, each time greatly increased in size, and presumably with a larger egg laying capacity.


"The angler should be willing to catch sparingly of these small fish through a short season, and every effort should be made to protect the little stream trout, the offspring of the steelheads. It may not be out of place here to call attention to the well known fact that stream fishing for trout, a major sport in California, is rapidly entering a critical stage. The extension of roads easily negotiated by the automobile, the building of high dams, the netting of steelheads in the rivers, water pollution, the use of water for irrigation, and many other things incident to a rapid growth in population, are causing a marked and sudden depletion in the number of fish. It has been said that intelligent conservation must depend largely on our knowledge of the natural history of the species, and nowhere else is this more applicable. Very often our attempts at conservation serve among other things to bring to the surface our lack of definite knowledge of the habits and life history of the very fish that we are striving to protect. It is to be hoped that active support will be given to the Fish and Game Commission in every effort at careful investigation along this line."


FE (15 May 1925) Set Net Fouled His Motor Boat--A set net in Eel river near the mouth of Salt river last Thursday evening caused a lot of trouble for Viggo Eriksen, Ferndale automobile dealer. His motor boat crossed the net, which he could not see in the darkness, and the net wrapped up so tightly around the propeller and shaft that the launch was put out of commission...Who owned the net is not known but it is safe to say that it will not be used again for illegal fishing in Eel river without extensive repairs...


FE (12 June 1925) Walton League to be Organized by Ferndale People--Out to bring home the bacon from the game and fish hogs of this vicinity, sportsmen of Ferndale have decided to organize a chapter of the Izaak Walton of America, a national organization whose sole purpose is to preserve what is left of our out-of-doors...

The Izaak Walton a non-commercial, non-political, and non-religious body of men and women who realize that our woods, water, and wildlife are vanishing, and who have formed a national program entirely practical for the elimination of water pollution, game violations and the continued deforestation of our woodlands...[National League organized in 1922].


FE (21 Aug. 1925) Already rumors of net fishing in Eel river in violation of the law are being received. It is to be hoped that the wardens will be able to keep the nets out of the river this season.


FE (5 Feb. 1926) Took the Season's Largest Steelhead--Frank Shipman of Eureka won the rod, reel, and line offered by Lon McNew, Eureka sporting goods dealer, for taking the largest steelhead in Eel river for the 1925 season...weighed 14 3\4 pounds...


FE (26 March 1926) A rearing pond to accommodate 100,000 small fish is to be built this year at the Fort Seward fish hatchery.


FE (23 April 1926) Local anglers have been enjoying fair sport of late catching flounders and perch at the mouth of Eel river.


FE (30 April 1926) Tomorrow May 1st is Opening of Fishing Season; Ferndale Stores will be Closed--Tomorrow, Saturday, May 1st, will be observed as a holiday in Ferndale. The occasion is the opening of the fishing season for 1926, a day to which the local followers of Isaac Walton have been looking forward for many months past.

The stores and business houses will be closed all day tomorrow but will be open this evening for the convenience of their patrons.…The prospects are good for a successful opening of the trout season tomorrow. The streams are all unusually low for this time of the year, holding out promise for the taking of limit catches of fish in many parts of the county.

Many local anglers are planning to be on the Mattole river early tomorrow, while other streams will attract their full quotas of the disciples of Isaac Walton. There will be some exciting stories heard Monday of the full baskets and the big ones which got away.

FE (30 July 1926) Motor boats are becoming numerous on Eel river, one of the latest and best to be launched having been that owned by T.F. Boyd and Ed Rasmussen. This is a 22-foot speed model with 25 horsepower motor and is thought to be the fastest on the river. Many new outboard motors have been put into commission of late, so quite a fleet of motor driven boats will be on hand for the opening of the trolling season.


FE (13 Aug. 1926) Camp Weeott is Growing Rapidly--Camp Weeott at the mouth of Eel river gives promise of becoming one of the largest fishing resorts in northern California within a short time, if the present rate of growth continues.

Work was started this week on two new cabins...Several new cabins have already been completed this season, all of which have given Camp Weeott a substantial growth. It is expected a number of others will be completed before the season is over.…The camp is a popular resort for visitors from all parts of the county and with the arrival of the fishing season will draw more people than in the past few months. The road to the camp is in splendid condition.


FE (10 Sept. 1926) The old jetty in Eel river at Pleasant Point was blown out this week by the county fish and game wardens in order that it might not obstruct the run of fish up the river.


FE (15 Oct. 1926) Landed Salmon on Fly Outfit--R.L. Jacobsen, the Ferndale tailor and one of the most ardent local disciples of Isaac Walton, had a thrilling experience last Thursday evening when he landed a forty-pound salmon on a fly outfit at the Snag pool near Singleys.

He was steelhead fishing at the time, and as the fish were not rising to the fly, he put on a double 0 spinner. He hooked a steelhead shortly but this fish got away and a few minutes afterward the big salmon took the lure. After a battle which lasted about an hour, Jake succeeded in getting the fish tired out and wading into the river he managed to gaff it, bringing it ashore after a hard struggle. The fish was a fresh one, full of fight, and the battle created quite a sensation, many anglers stopping their fishing to watch the struggle and offer advice.


FE (25 Feb. 1927) Year's Activity at Fort Seward Fish Hatchery--In the annual report of the California Fish and Game Commission, just issued, is given the following account of the year's work of the fish hatchery at Fort Seward in this county, the needs of the station in the matter of equipment being also pointed out:


"There has been a very successful output of fish from this hatchery and considerable repairs and replacement work done...[long description of facilities and work done]. During the past biennial period this station has distributed 498,150 salmon, 3,783,620 rainbow, 1,582,700 steelhead, 108,920 large lake, 160,000 cut-throat, 200,000 black spotted trout."


FE (17 June 1927) Salmon Fishing Season is made is reported that the season for taking salmon in Eel river would be closed from October 6th to May 31st. Also that the limit had been reduced to two per day.


It is the opinion of many prominent anglers of the county that this report is an error...The closing of the season on October 6th, when the salmon run is really just beginning here would mean in reality that there would be no salmon fishing in Eel river for the angler who obeys the law. And what reason there could be for anyone desiring to close the river to trollers no one can tell. With salmon being taken by the tons by the outside fishing boats it seems ridiculous even to reduce the limit in Eel river to two a day, not to speak of closing the season entirely when the run is just commencing.


FE (8 July 1927) Commission says Salmon Season to Close

October 6--...In a letter to the Arcata Union the Fish and Game Commission makes the following explanation...:.Assembly Bill No. 27, which passed the legislature and was signed by the Governor, District 1 1\2, two salmon a day may be taken with spear or hook and line, from August 1 to October 6, inclusive; the rest of the year is closed..."

It can be readily seen by anyone after reading Mr. Scofield's statement that the members of the Fish and Game Committee of the Legislature by the juggling of the fish laws with the attended confusion and garbled reports has resulted in the passing of a measure that has been signed by the Governor and become a law that will deprive hundreds of men and women of their only winter sport...As there are very few if any salmon taken before October 6, this new law means that the thrill of hooking onto the big ones in Eel River is a sport of the past for the new law will be in force by the time the fishing season is here...

The passing of this new law is deplored by all of our local fishermen and the manner in which the law was "slipped over" is vigorously denounced as no opportunity was given [our] citizens or chamber of commerce to present their views and arguments against the passing of this unjust measure. The supervisors of Humboldt county have cooperated with the people in giving them camp sites, good roads, and other accommodations at the mouth of Eel River and Mad River so that the people both young and old could enjoy the popular sport of trolling and casting for the "big fellows" and this fool law has now deprived them of the lawful enjoyment of it.


With hundreds of commercial fishing boats operating off the coast, bringing in salmon by the tons every evening, it is difficult to see by what working of the mind any legislator could bring himself to vote for a measure which would stop the taking of a few salmon per day with hook and line in the rivers of this county by the citizens and taxpayers, who make up the body of the trollers. The new law will go down in history as the most unpopular measure ever passed by a legislative body in California, so far as the people of Humboldt county are concerned.


FE (8 July 1927) It is reported that a few steelhead have been taken in Eel river on the troll the past week. It is good news to the anglers of the county that the annual run has commenced and the fly fishermen will soon be enjoying their favorite sport with the big ones.


FE (15 July 1927) Salmon Fishing Law Ambiguous; May not Stand.


FE (29 July 1927) District Attorney Gives Opinion on new Salmon Law--...District Attorney Metzler and Game Warden Barnes [have] brought out the following interpretation of the law: That all persons may take at least two salmon a day on any day from the 1st day of August to the 14th day of November, both days inclusive, with spear and hook and line.


Mr. Metzler has requested that this interpretation be given publicity so that all sportsmen and anglers will know their fishing rights in Humboldt county under the name of the Law.


FE (5 Aug. 1927) A good run of steelhead has been in Eel river for the past week or more and local anglers have been enjoying fine sport.


FE (23 Sept. 1927) Good catches of salmon and steelhead have been reported the past week in the Fulmor pool on Eel river. The fish seem to be rather scarce at the mouth of the river so far, though a few have been taken.


AU (6 Oct. 1927) Salmon Scarce this Season--Local fishermen who have been disappointed over the light run of salmon in Mad River, Eel River and the Klamath will be interested in reading the following item...:


"Washington, Sept. 28--For reason as yet a mystery, both to the fishing industry and the Government experts, the salmon catch on the Pacific Coast this year has been reduced to about 50 percent of normal..."


FE (21 Oct. 1927) Warden Kaliher Makes Clean-up of Nets in Waters of Eel River--Any doubt that might have been entertained as to persistent rumors that netting has been done in Eel river in violation of the law has been dispelled by the activities of Deputy Fish and Game Warden W.F. Kaliher, who has been assigned to the work of patrolling the lower stretches of this stream.


Deputy Kaliher entered upon his duties on September 29th and since that time has seized seven nets and arrested four netters. In addition he has also arrested two men for dynamiting fish in the Ellery pool and has made five arrests for illegal spearing.


Rumors that netting has been in progress have been heard all the season since the annual run of salmon commenced. This has also been [the] case for several years past. Upon the occasion of a recent visit of Jos. Hunter, then chief of patrol of the state fish and game commission, to this county he was informed by many people of these rumors and stated that a special deputy would be put on the river in an endeavor to ascertain the truth of the reports and to stop illegal fishing if such was found to be in progress.…Mr. Kaliher has the backing of all citizens in the county who are interested in seeing the fishing laws enforced, and his work will undoubtedly result in making illegal fishing a thing of the past.


FE (21 Oct. 1927) An immense run of Spanish mackerel have made their appearance in Salt river the past week. Wednesday a couple of drags of a small meshed seine were made among them and at each haul a boat load of fish was secured. They are fine eating.


FE (28 Oct. 1927) Kaliher Given Commendation for good Work--...Seven nets have been taken by Warden Kaliher, a number of netters arrested, illegal spearers and two dynamiters also having been taken in. It is evident that a real effort is being made to enforce the fishing laws on Eel river and many local people have been heard to express the hope that the good work will be kept up...


FE (28 Oct. 1927) Fortuna Plans to Organize Fish and Game Association--...The propagation of fish and game will be one of the aims of the club to be organized. Eel river, one of the best steelhead and trout streams of the West, is attracting yearly many sportsmen and to make the stream even more attractive to outside anglers through a more systematic plan of planting of fish will be one of the aims of the club. The club will not only represent interests locally but it is planned to lend a helping hand to other sections of southern Humboldt and help promote every move that will work to better fish and game conditions.


The planting of the Eastern salmon in Eel river has been suggested by visiting sportsmen and if this suggestion is carried out the fishing season on the stream can be greatly lengthened and made more attractive.


FE (11 Nov. 1927) Crab Season Opens Tuesday Nov. 15th--The open season for crab fishing in Eel river begins next Tuesday Nov. 15th...


The season has been closed [since] July 30th. It is reported there are many crabs in Eel river and unless the heavy rain has brought too much fresh water the crab fishermen may look for some good catches. It is unlawful to take any crab under seven inches in length or to take any female crab. It is also unlawful to ship any crabs out of Humboldt county.


FE (18 Nov. 1927) Salmon Season Closed Monday in this District--The salmon fishing season in District No. 1 1\2, which includes Eel river, ended last Monday, Nov. 14th, under the provisions of the new law passed at the last legislative session.…It is, however, lawful to take five steelhead a day until January 1st, so that trollers are given a chance for sport providing the river clears up sufficiently to afford good fishing...


FE (25 Nov. 1927) The Eel River Fish and Game Club has been organized at Fortuna with a charter membership of 92...


FE (25 Nov. 1927) Gill Nets Returned--Justice of the Peace Robertson of Fortuna has made an order for the return to Ray Davidson of gill nets taken from him on Eel river by Warden W.F. Kaliher. The warden caught Davidson in a boat on the river but the nets had not been in use and were dry. The justice of the peace ruled that the nets must be returned as it is not illegal to have possession of nets but is illegal to use them in the river.


FE (22 June 1928) Reports have been received of a few steelhead having been seen in Eel river the past week and one was taken by a Eureka angler on a fly. The run is unusually early this season and it is not expected there will be much sport for anglers until a little later.


FE (6 July 1928) A number of steelhead have been taken in Eel river during the past week, showing that the annual run of these gamey fish has commenced.


FE (20 July 1928) Steelhead are beginning to run in Eel river and already some of our anglers have been successful in hooking and landing quite a number. Mrs. W.A. Smith of Grizzly Bluff captured a fine specimen in the pool above Easts ferry. The fish weighed twelve pounds.


FE (31 Aug. 1928) Sidney Morrison succeeded in landing the first big salmon of the season last Sunday in Eastlake Slough, the fish weighing more than thirty pounds.


FE (14 Sept. 1928) Fishing Note--...Mr. Fred Hohwiesner...caught what is believed to be the largest salmon of the season in the Fulmor hole on Monday. The salmon weighed 32 pounds.


FE (12 Oct. 1928) Landed Fifteen Pound Steelhead--The largest steelhead landed on a fly this season in Eel river was taken Wednesday by Dr. Edward Kellogg of Los Angeles, who is a guest at Weymouth Inn, where he spends some time each season. Dr. Kellogg landed the big fish after a long fight and has as good reason to be proud of his catch as Babe Ruth is of his catch of the last fly in the world's series.

Ira Dix of San Francisco landed a thirteen-pound steelhead this week, also in the Weymouth pool. There is a run of unusually large steelhead in the river at present and some fine sport is being enjoyed by the fly fishermen.


FE (14 Dec. 1928) Wardens Kaliher, Harp and Yates last Friday night arrested two men whom they state were placing a net in what is known as the Gravel Pit pool above Fernbridge. The men, Charles C. Glover and Ernest Petersen, were released under $500 bonds to await trial before Justice Robertson of Fortuna.


FE (14 Dec. 1928) The rain which began Sunday night has caused a raise of several feet in Eel river and has put a stop to fishing. The latter part of the week and on Sunday the anglers were having fine sport with the steelhead, many being taken on the fly and spinner.


FE (22 Feb. 1929) Ferndale Men win in National Fish Contest--George E. Becker and F.J. Rushmore of Ferndale won the third and fifth prizes in the Rainbow-Steelhead Trout Division of the 1928 National Fishing contest conducted by "Field and Stream," the well known magazine in the outdoor field. Mr. Becker took third place in this contest for a 12 lb. 8 oz. trout caught in Eel river on October 17, 1928. Mr. Rushmore's prize winning fish which took fifth place weighed 12 lb. 6 oz. and was also caught in Eel river on September 12, l928... Full results of the contest and of the Ferndalers' catches are printed in the March issue of "Field and Stream."


FE (8 March 1929) Local anglers have been enjoying good sport fishing for perch at the mouth of Eel river and along the beach the past week and some good catches have been made.


FE (3 May 1929) Taking of trout eggs at the dam of the Snow Mountain Power Company on Eel river by the Fish and Game Commission was ordered stopped Saturday by Fred G. Stevenot, State Director of National Resources, pending investigation of reports that thousands of steelhead had died in the stream.


FE (12 July 1929) The annual run of steelhead has commenced in Eel river and a few fish have been taken during the past few days, mostly on the spinner. The fly fishermen have been somewhat handicapped by reason of the river being unusually high for this time of year but the water is falling rapidly and fly fishing should be good within the next couple of weeks.


FE (2 Aug. 1929) Steelhead have been running the past few days in better numbers than previously this season and a number of the gamy fish have been taken by trollers, spoon casters and fly fishermen.


FE (2 Aug. 1929) Excellent fishing has been reported at the Centerville beach. Great numbers of perch, smelt and candle fish have been taken, much to the delight of local anglers.


FE (9 Aug. 1929) Gillnetting in Eel River Stirs Deputy Wardens to Action--Captain Lippincott in charge of patrol work of the California Fish and Game Commission in this county, accompanied by Deputy Harp, was a visitor to Ferndale the first of the week on official business. The wardens were interviewing local people regarding persistent rumors that nets are being used unlawfully in Eel river and that many fish have been taken in this way. From Messrs. Lippincott and Harp the Enterprise learns that redoubled efforts are to be put forth to stop netting in Eel river, in which work the wardens will have the unanimous support of the anglers of this county.

Evidence that nets have been drawn many times this year in Eel river is plentiful. The river has been without a regular patrol since the departure of warden Kaliher, who was transferred to Trinity County, though Wardens Lippincott, Harp and Yates have done considerable patrol work on the stream. It is realized that it is a difficult task to keep nets out of the stream owing to the many miles to be patrolled.

The illegal netting has had a distinct bearing on the scarcity of steelhead in the up-river pools during the present season, in the opinion of local anglers. It is pointed out that the fish have appeared in large numbers in the lower pools since the first of July but have been conspicuous by their absence up the stream. Occasionally a few fish have worked their way up the river but in nothing like the numbers in which they have entered the lower river. Where they have gone to is probably known to the netters better than to anyone else, in the opinion of local sportsmen.


It is stated by observers that fish have been as plentiful in the Snag pool this year as they were last season, and in July of last year the upriver pools were teeming with fish, while this season they are not to be found. It will be recalled that early last season an intensive campaign against the netters was made, and Warden Kaliher succeeded in getting six nets in one week, after which fishing conditions improved.

Wardens Lippincott, Yates and Harp are alive to the situation, and have evidence of nets being used. They are efficient officials and that their efforts to curb illegal netting in Eel river will bring forth results is a certainty. They ask the co-operation of everybody interested in seeing that unlawful netting is stopped and state that all information given them will be treated as confidential.

The wardens have a difficult task in patrolling long stretches of Eel river and should receive the united support of all who believe the law should be enforced. Information given them of illegal netting will aid them much in apprehending the netters and upon their success in keeping the nets out of the river and bringing the netters into court depends the future of Eel river as a paradise for anglers. The matter is of deep interest to all of Humboldt county, it is pointed out, as the fame of Eel river as a fishing stream brings thousands of tourists here every year.


FE (23 Aug. 1929) New Game Warden now Located here--...Deputy S. Feland comes here from Watsonville and will make his headquarters in Fortuna. With his arrival the Humboldt force now consists of five men, Captain Lippincott and Deputies Harp, Yates, Deamond and Feland.


The wardens are doing active work in the county and are paying especial attention to Eel river at this time on account of the reports of illegal netting which have come in.


FE (13 Sept. 1929) Salmon trollers have been having good sport the past few days in the Fulmor pool and near the mouth of Eel river and some fine fish have been taken. Salmon are reported unusually plentiful for this time of the year.


FE (4 Oct. 1929) Sturgeon Causes Great Excitement at Fulmor

Pool--While M.P. Petersen and his son Hans were trolling in the Fulmor pool on Eel river Tuesday, and the latter was reeling in a salmon, the couple were suddenly aware of a strange noise on the river. Their first thought was that someone had lost the motor from a boat. Then with a sudden splash a sturgeon between five and a half and six feet long leaped into the Petersen boat. The boat was immediately rowed ashore and the fish was finally dispatched after a considerable amount of energy had been extended.


FE (25 Oct. 1929) Game Warden Feland, whose headquarters are at Fortuna, was in Ferndale Wednesday making inquiries among the residents of this community regarding the reports which are common that netters have been operating in Eel river in violation of the law. It is common report that many fish have been taken from Eel river this season by netters.


FE (13 June 1930) Angling Conditions in Eel River Should be Changed, says Editor--M. Reidy of Weymouth Inn, regional chairman of the Associated Sportsmen of California, is in receipt of a personal letter from H.L. Belten, editor of the "Associated Sportsmen" magazine...:

"Doubtless you have read the last issue of 'Associated Sportsmen' and have noted the resolutions set forth in the minutes. For a considerable period there has been much criticism of several commission departments, notably that of fish culture. Drastic changes are now being demanded and if this action meets with the approval of northern California members of the Association, it would please us very much to have their active and earnest support, particularly through the medium of resolutions and letters of endorsement.

"My personal surveys of your section lead me to believe that the neglect to develop possibilities is little less than criminal. However, the sportsmen themselves are largely to blame. If they do not take an aggressive attitude and make insistent demands, the natural tendency of employees is to follow the lines of least resistance. Unless immediate action is taken relative to full development of coast potentialities there is great danger of almost total extermination of coastal angling resources. The accessibility and the attractions of your region cannot fail to overflow your county with recreationists, the vast majority of whom will want to fish. You cannot stand the drain and particularly when the excessive limit of 25 trout tends to strip every riffle of small fish before they acquire wisdom or can get to sea. The present system of planting fry is a joke. In the first place, from 90 to 95% are exterminated before they reach the fingerling stage; secondly, the salmon eggers get from 75 to possibly 90% of those that survive and reach the fingerling stage.

"If the Commission would plant say 100,000 fingerling trout in the tributaries of the Eel after the trout season closes and would close at least a half dozen feeder streams entirely, there would be a rapid change for the better so far as rainbow-steelhead are concerned. The sportsmen in your section should demand that action regardless of what Commission employees have to say. The same policies should prevail in connection with all coast streams.

"Relative to the Atlantic salmon, it is my belief the Eel is ideal for these fish if they can be successfully acclimated. With the prevailing conditions as to water supply they would be better adapted to your pools than the steelhead. Pound for pound they would put up as hard a fight and would take the fly even more readily. There is a likelihood of these salmon coming in as early as May, which would provide high class early fishing and would vastly extend the season for big fish. In this connection, I am suggesting to the boys that the commission be asked to secure at least 50,000 eyed eggs from England next year. Of course, you know that these fish are of the Salmo family and are more closely related to our native trout than to our Pacific salmon.

"I failed to note any Atlantic salmon smolt or parr in the Smith or Eel but caught three in Redwood Creek that still had the pronounced parr markings although they were about six inches long. So long as the parr marks remain these fish will stay in the rivers and I would suggest that if any are caught in your section they be returned to the river if not injured and that a report be sent to the Association's office. They should be easy to identify as the vertical parr marks will be dark and very pronounced even on six inch fish. It is quite possible most of the young salmon planted in the Eel have gone to sea as they were about six inches long on Armistice Day; but those reared in the Prairie Creek Hatchery were considerably smaller and I am informed that hatchery released 15,000 small fingerlings in Redwood Creek--not 4,000 as was reported.

"Our most important game fish is the steelhead (Salmo irideus in most coast streams) but we should insist that the supply of cutthroat-steelheads, kings, and silversides be built up. It cannot be done by stripping the bulk of our wild fish and planting fry, the vast majority of which never reach maturity. The time has come when our fish cultural department must institute modern methods...The Commission's stockholders--the sportsmen--are becoming impatient and are demanding action.

"Sincerely yours, H.L. Belten, Editor, Associated Sportsmen."


FE (27 June 1930) A total of 860,000 fish will be planted in Humboldt county streams this summer, according to an announcement made this week by Captain William Lippincott of the fish and game patrol. Of that number, 465,000 will be planted by Eel river valley sportsmen, 355,000 by the Humboldt Fish and Game Protective Association and 40,000 by the Gephart Brothers at Weitchpec.


FE (15 Aug. 1930) Dead Fish Cover Salt River Banks--The banks of Salt river nearly as far up as Arlynda corner are covered with millions of small sardines which have died from some unknown cause, while the same condition exists in the various sloughs tributary to the lower part of Eel river and along some parts of that river itself. A stench has arisen which has caused some people living along the river to temporarily change their place of residence, and the situation which has arisen is causing considerable comment and speculation.

As to the cause for the millions of dead fish, the theory most generally accepted is that the run, unprecedented for size, has filled the river to such an extent that the oxygen in the water is insufficient to support life and that the fish, getting into the sluggish current of the river and sloughs, have died by the millions. During the extreme high tides of the first of the week the dead fish were left high along the banks and the stench from the decaying matter is anything but agreeable. During low water periods the mud flats are seen covered by the dead fish, and the number which have died can only be guessed at, but it must be in the millions.

On Sunday, a big run of silverside salmon, believed to be native to the Klamath river, came into the mouth of Eel river and some good trolling was enjoyed that day by local anglers, as well as for several days later. The fish taken were found to have been eating the sardines, and it is presumed that they were brought into Eel river by the abundant food supply. They have not gone any distance up the river, according to reports, and it is thought that most of them have left the river on their run north to the Klamath. This was about a month earlier than silversides have appeared in the river in previous years, lending support to the theory that the fish belong in the Klamath and merely dropped inside the Eel river entrance following the sardines.

FE (17 Oct. 1930) Fish and Game Policy Doubted:

"There has been no convincing proof that present fish and game policies are the correct ones," declared Carl Westerfeld in a recent address. Westerfeld was California Fish and Game Commissioner from January 1912 to December 1916, and afterwards Executive Officer until July 1920.


"The question of methods has never been seriously investigated," he said. "The life histories of the most important game fishes of California are yet a sealed book. Little is known about the habits and requirements of our native rainbow trout and steelhead. Yet, for some sixty years, millions of dollars have been spent and an immense amount of labor put forth in the hatching and distribution of these fish.


"No serious inquiry has been made whether artificial hatching is an improvement over natural spawning, provided the areas of spawning beds were systematically enlarged and their physical and biological conditions improved


"Lack of adequate knowledge about these factors probably explains why the sport of trout fishing in California has suffered a steady decline. At the present time, any claim on the part of California to a fisherman's paradise is fictitious. Only in the isolated outlying streams can the limit be secured. Over a large portion of California the practical result of the last twenty-five years of conservation policy is twenty-five, three-inch fish per day.


"A man taking a three-inch baby fish off of $100 worth of tackle and gravely depositing the poor little body among the fern in a $20 basket is not indulging in true sport, but in child's play."


FE (31 Oct. 1930) Will Build Large Dam at Benbows--Construction of a new dam across the South Fork of Eel River in southern Humboldt, planned for more than two years, will be undertaken this winter, according to announcements by the Benbow Company, promoters of the project...


FE (31 Oct. 1930) Fly fishermen have been enjoying good sport with the steelheads on lower Eel river of late, and some large fish have been landed. Fred Burnham of San Francisco, who is a guest at Weymouth Inn, landed one the first of the week which weighed fourteen pounds.


FE (28 Nov. 1930) Oppose Operation of Fish Spawning--Residents of Potter Valley, below the lowest Eel river dam in Mendocino county, gathered in large numbers recently to protest the re-establishment of the state fish and game commission's egg-taking station at that point. Protests were made by persons living around the river that as a result of the steelhead egg-taking activities, hundreds of dead fish were washed upon the banks of the stream every summer, causing noxious odors. It was admitted, however, this condition was lacking last summer, when the station was operated, says the Ukiah Republican Press.


FE (2 Jan. 1931) Wednesday last Day for Anglers--Last Wednesday, December 31st, marked the close of the trout season in Humboldt county, and anglers may now lay aside their tackle until May 1st.

There has been an immense run of winter steelhead in Eel river of late and during the last week or two of the season, some fine sport was enjoyed by the anglers. It is claimed that there are more steelhead in the river now than for many years past, and the water being exceptionally low and clear for this time of the year has allowed the anglers a much longer season than usual to enjoy their favorite sport.


FE (17 April 1931) Local Fish and Game Association met Tuesday Eve--...The Association went on record as favoring the movement to close the Klamath river to commercial fishing, and Secretary Jos. Bognuda was instructed to notify the State Fish and Game Commission and Senator H.C. Nelson....

A discussion was had regarding commercial fishing inside the three mile limit, it being stated that large schools of salmon congregate near the mouths of rivers, where they are located by the outside fishermen and large hauls are made.


FE (1 May 1931) One of the largest salmon catches in years was made Saturday by the fishermen operating out of Eureka, approximately 45 tons of salmon being taken from the ocean off Centerville.


FE (19 June 1931) The salmon fishers of the Eureka port are experiencing a season of good catches off the Humboldt entrance. The good weather, together with a fine run of fish, has made it possible the last few days for the boats engaging in the salmon fishing to make daily catches ranging from 15,000 to 30,000 pounds. Approximately 65 boats are engaging in the fishing.


FE (10 July 1931) Anglers report having seen three sturgeon in the Jetty pool in Eel river of late, two being quite large and one a smaller fish. It is very unusual of late years for these fish to be found in the river.


FE (2 Oct. 1931) Seals Numerous in Lower Eel River--Seals are reported unusually numerous in the lower stretches of Eel river during the past week or two. A few have come up as far as the Fulmor and Ellery pools, but many are seen in the Fitch and Sullivan pools, as well as nearer the mouth of the river... The seals live on the salmon and other game fish in the river and it would be a good job if they were exterminated in the opinion of Eel river anglers.


FE (16 Oct. 1931) Eel River Salmon Trolling Affords Sport to Hundreds--Hundreds of anglers have enjoyed great sport the past week trolling for salmon in Eel river and many fine large fish have been taken. Most of the fishing has been done in the Fulmor pool, where a new run of salmon came in Friday night, and on Saturday great sport was had by the many anglers who were on the river. News of the good trolling spread throughout the county, and on Sunday the pool was covered with boats, careful navigation being required to avoid collisions.

It is estimated that on Sunday about 300 salmon were taken from the Fulmor pool, mostly large fish. One angler took a salmon weighing 46 pounds which was the largest reported that day.

The good fishing has continued during the week, and many anglers who have had much experience in Eel river state that it has been the best experienced for many years.


FE (23 Oct. 1931) Reason for Dead Salmon in River is Investigated --A situation without precedent in the history of Eel river, so far as can be learned, exists at present, where large numbers of salmon are dying daily... On Tuesday, Dr. Holmayer, an expert from the Fish and Game Commission, arrived in the county and spent the day investigating conditions in Eel river. In a report given to Secretary J.J. Bognuda of the Ferndale Fish and Game Association, Dr. Holmayer submitted the following findings:

That the fish are dying from a lack of oxygen in the partially stagnant water in the different pools.


That the salmon may be taken and eaten with perfect safety...


Hundreds of salmon have been taken during the past week by spearers, who find them an easy mark in the shallow water. Also a great many have been taken by trollers, who may row alongside the fish as they swim along the top of the water, and take them in with a gaff. A great many dead fish may be seen floating in the water and lying on the banks of the river, particularly at low tide.


The extremely low water in Eel river at the present time is undoubtedly the cause of the many fish dying. It is pointed out that the tidewater in the Fulmor, Ellery and Snag pools, where most of the fish are dying, merely flows back and forth over the same ground, and is not renewed either by water from the ocean, as in the lower pools, or by the small amount of fresh water flowing down the stream as in the case of the pools farther up the river.


The Fernbridge pool is loaded with salmon, and apparently the fish have not been dying. It is stated, however, that they do not remain there, as their instinct is to keep moving up the stream, and under the present condition of low water they cannot get over the riffles. They then drop down again into the stagnant water below, where they die in numbers. In the lower river a short distance above the mouth, no dead fish are reported, except those which may float down.


FE (30 Oct. 1931) River Rises and Permits Salmon to go Upstream--A heavy rain the latter part of last week caused Eel river to rise enough to allow salmon by the thousands to make their way up the stream to their spawning grounds and saved them from dying in the lower stretches of the river as they had been doing by the hundreds for two weeks before the rain.


The river raised steadily from Thursday until Sunday, and about Thursday night the fish began going up the river, it being quite a sight to see them going up over the riffles. The fact that they are making their way to the spawning grounds gives assurance of a supply of fish in the future, which was endangered when the fish were confined to the lower stretches of the river by low water.


Many dead fish are yet floating in the lower pools, there not having been enough current to carry them all out, but the worst of the condition is past and no fear is felt of further deaths among the salmon. The rain was of great benefit to Humboldt county generally and to the salmon and steelhead of Eel river in particular.


FE (13 Nov. 1931) Jos. Bognuda, secretary of the Ferndale Fish and Game Association, has taken a number of pictures recently showing the large number of dead salmon along the banks of Eel river and through Attorney A.E. Eddy of San Francisco will bring the proposition before the Associated Sportsmen of California. It is claimed that the fish died as a result of the low stage of water in Eel river, partially due to diversion of water into the Russian river.


FE (18 Dec. 1931) Fish Ladder on River Installed--Jos. J. Bognuda, secretary of the Ferndale Fish and Game Association, states that considerable complaint has been heard of late to the effect that the new dam across Eel river at Benbow's has been stopping fish from going up the river.

He investigated the matter Wednesday and found that a fish ladder has been installed which is permitting the fish free passage up the stream. A representative of the Fish and Game Commission has been on the scene to study conditions and it is now thought that no further trouble will be encountered.

FE (1 Jan. 1932) Are Salmon Dying at Benbow Dam?--Some time ago it was stated that the new Benbow Dam in Eel river south of Garberville was not permitting fish to get up the stream to spawn. Later it was given out that a temporary fish ladder had been installed which was working satisfactorily and that the fish were getting up the stream without difficulty. It was reported that representatives of the Fish and Game Commission had investigated the situation and reported everything satisfactory.

In the Ukiah Republican Press of last Wednesday appeared the following article, which would make it appear that the problem has not yet been solved. The article is headed "Salmon Dying by Thousands" and is as follows:


"The State Division of Fish and Game has been requested by Governor James Rolph to investigate the fish ladder maintained by the Benbow Power Company on the south fork of Eel river.

"Residents of the area, resort owners and many who depend for a vital part of their food supply upon salmon taken from the stream, claim the fish ladder is a total failure and does not aid the upstream progress of the fish past the company's dam. The action of Governor Rolph was taken following complaints of several Mendocino county residents, and Daniel H. Blood, state director of natural resources, has instructed John L. Farley, executive officer of the division of fish and game, to study the situation.


"When the power dam was constructed no provision was made for a fish ladder. Later, when protests were made, a temporary ladder was built. This, according to complaint, does not function properly, the contention being made the bottom of the ladder is three feet above the level of the water. To prove their contention the ladder is inadequate, it is said no salmon are running above the dam, although they are plentiful in pools below."


FE (7 Oct. 1932) Fish and Game Commission will meet Oct. 11th--The meeting of the fish and game association will be held on Tuesday, October 11th. At this meeting the salmon problem of Eel river will be discussed. Three riffles near Fortuna are at present so low that the salmon cannot go up the river to their spawning beds. The pools on lower Eel river are alive with fish, many of these are full of spawn and in their attempts to navigate the shallow water they are injured to a point of spoiling the spawn, even if they did get over the riffles. This matter is now being taken up with John Spencer, Chief of Hydraulics, to have water released at the Snow Mountain Power Co., thus causing the river to raise enough for the fish to travel up the stream. This would relieve the situation in the event that no rain falls in the next few days to raise the river.


FE (14 Oct. 1932) Writes Regarding Creamery Wastes Entering Eel River--Division of Fish and Game to Jos. Bognuda:


"On my return to this office this day I find your communication of October 5th with respect to the concentration of fish below the riffles and their inability to pass on up the river.


"At times fish do not proceed on up stream as they are not entirely ready yet for the ascent but of course cannot say as to the conditions obtaining near Fortuna. I am wondering, however, if the riffles were taken out where the fish would be stopped next and it might be that it would be better that they be held in the place where they are, rather than some other place farther on up which would be less desirable. I cannot pass on that as it is just a thought that occurs to me...


"...As you probably know, we have talked with the creameries in the vicinity and they are giving consideration to the matter of preventing creamery wastes from entering the river which of course will be of benefit to fish life as the quality of the water will be improved.


"Yours very truly, John Spencer, Director, Bureau of Hydraulics."


FE (2 Dec. 1932) A steelhead weighing 18 pounds was caught Friday at the Snag pool by Mrs. A. Garcelon of Fortuna. Mrs. Garcelon, a most ardent follower of that sport, has so far this season caught 35 salmon and 29 steelhead.


FE (2 June 1933) Weymouth Inn, popular resort in this section, opened Sunday for the summer season with a large list of guests. The quaint inn is surrounded by a lovely old-fashioned garden and is one of the most picturesque spots in Humboldt. It is a mecca for fishing enthusiasts as well as vacationists, who go there to rest and enjoy the scenic beauty of the resort and surrounding country.


FE (14 July 1933) About this time of the year local fishermen expect a run of steelhead in the Eel River, but some of our ardent nimrods report that the prettiest flies fail to raise anything. A few have been seen jumping up the river near Weymouth, but no catches have been reported as yet.


FE (14 July 1933) Creeks Enriched with Steelhead Fry--Last Friday and Saturday night, Russ creek and Williams creek were enriched by twenty-five thousand fingerling steelhead trout each, through the efforts of Joe Bognuda and Leven Ericsen...Fifty thousand more are due this week end and will be planted twenty-five thousand in Bear River and twenty-five thousand in Guthrie. The fry were contributed by the state hatchery at Steelhead.


FE (8 Sept. 1933) Fly Fishing Good--Fly fishing for steelhead is reported as being real good in the Eel River at present, a number of local nimrods, who refuse to use anything except a fly rod, having caught numbers of the fighting steelies recently...


FE (17 Nov. 1933) Random Thoughts, by G.W.--Ferndale is the logical fisherman's headquarters--it's the center of the best, most dependable fishing, knows fishing, loves fishing, argues fishing. I thought I was a pretty good fisherman, but, brother, I see where I'm going to have a lot of fun really learning what fishing is all about. One thing I like about this country--you don't have to exaggerate to be a good fisherman. Johnny Brazil brought in a salmon and was aksed what it weighed. He said 40 pounds and when actually weighed it was 41 pounds.


FE (12 Jan. 1934) Club Plans Survey to Determine Cause of Fish Depletion--Plans were made at the meeting of the Eel River Valley Fish and Game Club last Friday to secure a survey of Eel river to find out what is causing the depleting of steelhead in that stream.

The habit of this fish, according to George Long, is to make its first run during the early part of July, which is the starting of the summer vacation when the tourist travel is the heaviest, he stated. He and other sportsmen who were present at the meeting expressed the same opinion that the lessening of the steelhead run was becoming alarming. This condition has been noticeable for several seasons...


FE (9 Feb. 1934) Steelhead Fishing Good in Eel River--The new extended season and the low water have combined to give the local fishermen an unusually good fishing season. Reports show that a number of steelhead have been caught at the Benbow dam on upper Eel river and some good catches have been made from boats at the mouth of the Van Duzen.

The new state law allows five steelhead or five trout to be caught per day during the months of January and February but new 1934 licenses must be obtained before fishing is permissible. Most of the fishermen have been using spinners or bait.


FE (30 March 1934) Eel River Steelhead Bring Three Prizes--Humboldt county citizens have always pointed with pride to Eel river as having produced the only steelhead in the state which won prizes and three such were taken during the past fishing season.

In the April issue of "Field and Stream" three awards were made for Eel river catches. First prize went to R.V. Kopf of Petaluma, who caught a 19 pound 12 ounce steelhead. Second prize went to Hugh L. Smith for an 18 pound steelhead. N. Mickelsen received fourth prize for catching a 17 pound steelhead. This was caught at Singley pool. The three men were visiting anglers from various parts of the state and make an annual visit to enjoy the wonderful fishing in Eel river.

FE (15 June 1934) Random Thoughts by G.W.--I can't see why the Fish and Game Clubs are opposed to the dumping of creamery waste products in the streams. If the Humboldt Creamery was forced to dispose of their waste products in some other way, hundreds of fishermen would suffer. Counted 21 men, women and children in boats or boots fishing at the end of the Humboldt waste pipe below Fernbridge one evening and there must be on an average of 20 or 30 per day that fish for the "sewer trout," as George Becker calls them...


FE (20 July 1934) Weymouth Inn Doings--Frank Stuart has been keeping the table well supplied with steelheads much to the delight of the guests. He is getting the limit from Weymouth pool every day.


FE (27 July 1934) Six thousand fish fry were planted in the East Branch of Eel river at Benbow last week.


FE (10 Aug. 1934) First big Run of Steelhead Appear in Lower Eel River--What appears to be the first big run of steelhead appeared in Eel river on Wednesday morning of this week. J.H. Ring caught two fine steelhead in Snag pool each weighing about seven pounds and both caught on a number four bronze spinner early Wednesday morning. Several others were caught later in the day and yesterday. From the way the steelhead and half pounders are jumping, there are plenty of fish in the river.


FE (24 Aug. 1934) Among the fishermen along Eel river this week were Robert L. Mann, attorney and president of the Associated Sportsmen and other sporting clubs; Mr. Stuart, attorney; C.L. Walker, interior decorator and contractor; Mrs. O.M. Saul and Mrs. L. Offatt all of San Francisco. The party stayed at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Bernard Tesh in Fortuna. They caught several steelhead at Snag pool.


AU (31 Aug. 1934) Many Fish are planted in Humboldt Streams--The following were planted in Humboldt county streams...a total of 447,000 silver salmon were planted in Eel river at Steelhead Creek.