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Glen Daniel Andrews Sr. is considered one of the all-time great professional bass anglers. Bobby Murray, two-time Bassmaster Classic champion, describes him as “the first true professional bass angler.” He mentored such fishing greats as Bill Dance, Billy and Bobby Murray, Ray Scott, and Jerry McKinnis. In addition, Andrews manufactured lures, promoted tournaments, wrote a syndicated outdoor column for the Springdale News called “Anglers World,” and wrote Techniques of Bass Fishing, a manual he used to teach fishing classes across Arkansas and throughout the Midwest. Andrews was inducted into Garry Mason’s Legends of the Outdoors National Hall of Fame in 2010.
Glen Andrews was born on May 31, 1931, the third of seven children, to Earl and Ruth Andrews on their farm near Lead Hill (Boone County). His father worked as a farmer and coon-dog trader. His mother managed the house and the garden. In 1950, Andrews graduated from Lead Hill High School and began clearing timber for the latest White River impoundment, Bull Shoals Lake. After the lake filled, Lead Hill Boat Dock hired him as one of its first guides, which started a fifteen-year career on three different lakes—Bull Shoals, Table Rock, and Beaver—in Arkansas and Missouri. During that time, Andrews averaged 300 days per year guiding and earned a regional reputation as a top guide.
He created Andrews Lure Company in Lampe, Missouri, in 1955 before moving to Rogers (Benton County) in 1965. At its height, it employed fifteen workers and offered nine lures. In the late 1960s and 1970s, Andrews retired from guiding to sell his lures at sport and travel shows throughout the Midwest, where he performed trick casting exhibitions to pay for his booths. He sold the company to Billy and Bobby Murray of Hot Springs (Garland County) in the late 1970s.
Andrews’s professional fishing career started in 1962. Although tournaments only awarded trophies at the time, Andrews believed that tournament success would help promote his lure company. This led to two World Series of Sport Fishing championships, in 1965 and 1966, as well as two second-place finishes, in 1962 and 1963. The World Series of Sport Fishing was the first tournament in the United States to include participants from around the world, which led to the present-day money tournaments organized by Bass Anglers Sportsman Society (BASS) and FLW Outdoors. To date, Rick Clunn and Judy Wong are the only other anglers to defend their world championships successfully. During his career, Andrews also won the Missouri State Championship in 1962, 1963, and 1965, and the Arkansas State Championship in 1965.
In 1967, Andrews helped BASS founder Ray Scott organize the first money tournament, the All-American Invitational, on Beaver Lake. Andrews chaired the rules committee and worked with Scott to recruit competitors for the tournament. That same year, Andrews served as president for the Professional Sports Fishing Association (PSFA), the first national nonprofit organization for professional anglers. Andrews and vice president Ed Howze structured the organization to resemble the Professional Golfers’ Association (PGA), collecting the best anglers to fish in tournaments throughout the country. In 1968, Andrews stepped down in order to support his family, and the organization quickly crumbled. His departure from the PSFA effectively ended his career in professional fishing.
As of 2010, Andrews lives with his wife, Anna Belle Harrison Andrews, in Lead Hill. They have three children.
For additional information:Andrews, D. Shane, and Jeremy Miller. An Impossible Cast: Glen Andrews and the Birth of Professional Fishing. Cincinnati: The Whitefish Press, 2009.
An Impossible Cast. http://www.animpossiblecast.com (accessed June 23, 2014).
Jeremy MillerUniversity of Kansas
D. Shane AndrewsLead Hill, Arkansas
Last Updated 6/23/2014
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