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Yesterday I visited the NH State Library in a search of some information a friend had asked me about. He was looking for some information on a fly tyer named Dick Fosie. I knew the name and had tied at least one of his patterns last year as part of the NH Traditional Arts Grant. Interestingly, his name appears in a letter that the late Jim Warner (fly tyer) wrote outlining some Lake Winnipesaukee fly patterns. In the letter he pointed out two of Fosie's patterns, the Dick's Special and the Winnipesaukee Queen. Warner points out in his letter that both patterns did not "catch on" and become popular, but they were written about in an article in NH Profile magazine in the late 50s. Trip to the library and......found the article in the 1956 February addition. Alchemy with Feathers by John Brennan. I'll focus more on the patterns and tyers in a future posting but what struck me was what he wrote about NH fly tying history. He wrote that fly tying did not become popular in NH until just before World War l. In the 1920s it became part of the occupational therapy programs in hospitals of the armed forces. After World War ll fly tying got a lot more traction and the city of Concord added it as part of their recreation program. Penacook High School added it as a night club/class that met two days per week after school.
I did not find out a great deal about Dick Fosie, but I did learn a few thing more about NHs fly tying history.
Scott Biron is a fly tyer from New Hampshire.