Fishing Fun and the Fish That Got Away

A reader describes how her family fished out of necessity growing up, and how they now fish for fun.

| May/June 2012

  • Fried Fish
    There’s nothing quite like fresh fish dipped in seasoned flour and fried in hot grease.
    Olga Lyubkin/Fotolia

  • Fried Fish

Growing up in the 1930s, the sole purpose of fishing was to put food on the table. Like others of that era, money was scarce in our family. Luckily, I had three older brothers who taught me how to dig for worms and to bait a hook.

Our fishing equipment consisted of long wooden poles cut from a nearby thicket, strong grocery twine for the line, an iron nut tied on one end for a sinker, and either a fishing hook, when available, or a safety pin we opened and bent to form a hook.

Often, we would take home a stringer of pan-size fish for Mom to fry for supper.

Rolled in seasoned flour and dropped into a skillet with hot grease, the delicious aroma poured through the house.

I later married a farm boy from Indiana who had fished at a pond down the gravel road from his family’s house. He said no matter the size of his catch, if he carried a few fish home on a stringer, his mother would fry them for supper that evening.

The fish that got away

Since Paul and I both enjoyed fishing, we often took our three children on weekend trips and vacations, catching fish at nearby rivers, farm ponds or one of the 10,000 lakes in Minnesota.

Mother Earth News Fair Schedule 2019


Next: April 27-28, 2019
Asheville, N.C.

Whether you want to learn how to grow and raise your own food, build your own root cellar, or create a green dream home, come out and learn everything you need to know — and then some!


Subscribe today

Capper's FarmerWant to rediscover what made grandma’s house the fun place we all remember? Capper’s Farmer — the newly restored publication from the rural know-how experts at — updates the tried-and-true methods your grandparents used for cooking, crafting, gardening and so much more. Subscribe today and discover the joys of homemade living and homesteading insight — with a dash of modern living — that makes up the new Capper’s Farmer.

Save Even More Money with our automatic renewal savings plan!

Pay now with a credit card and take advantage of our automatic renewal savings plan. You save an additional $6 and get 4 issues of Capper's Farmer for only $16.95 (USA only).

Or, Bill Me Later and I'll pay just $22.95 for a one year subscription!

Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube Twitter

Free Product Information Classifieds