Who invented the fishing swivel?

The fishing swivel is an essential component of any fishing rig, allowing the angler to easily attach their line to their bait or lure without the risk of tangles. But who exactly can we credit for this ingenious invention?

The origins of the fishing swivel can be traced back to the mid-19th century, when anglers were using simple knots and attachments to connect their line to their bait. However, these methods often resulted in tangled lines and lost catches, leading inventors to seek out a better solution.

One such inventor was Englishman James Heddon, who is known for founding the eponymous fishing lure company. In the late 1800s, Heddon came up with the idea to attach a metal ring to his fishing line, allowing it to rotate freely and prevent tangles. This early version of the swivel was a game-changer for anglers and paved the way for further innovations in fishing gear.

Another early pioneer of the fishing swivel was William Shakespeare Jr., founder of the Shakespeare Fishing Tackle company. In 1899, he patented a swivel design that featured a series of ball bearings, providing an even smoother rotation and further reducing the risk of tangles.

Over the years, countless improvements have been made to the fishing swivel. Today’s swivels come in a wide range of sizes, shapes, and materials, each designed to improve the angler’s experience and help them catch more fish.

While it may be difficult to pinpoint exactly, its origins can be traced back to a time when anglers were looking for ways to improve their fishing techniques. Thanks to the pioneering inventors of the past, the fishing swivel remains an essential tool in the modern angler’s arsenal.

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