"Leonard Halladay, of Mayfield, Michigan [near Traverse
City] was the first to tie this truly "Michigan's favorite
fly" which was named for Charles F. Adams, an attorney
of Lorrain, Ohio. As Halladay himself tell it:
"The first Adams I made I handed to Mr. Adams, who
was fishing in a small pond in front of my house, to try
on the Boardman that evening. When he came back next
morning, he wanted to know what I called it. He said it
was a 'knock-out' and I said we would call it the Adams,
since he had made the first good catch on it.'
As is always true with any popular fly, it developed variations
and is now found in a Mrs. as well as blue wing pattern.
It is tied in the dry pattern only. [Mrs. shown at right].
It is easy to see how some flies attain wide and lasting
popularity - they simply combine the salient features of
a number of the more prevalent naturals. The Adams combines
what I personally regard as the two basic colors of flies -
brown and gray, and the mottling blends the two colors in
a most natural way. The rough body is a more attractive
type - or rather a type more attractive - than quill, silk
or metal. The wide wings suggest the spent fly, and also the
attention-getting loom of the fanwing and will stand up
much better under use. Also the fly is saved from complete
invisibility by the barred wings.
The christening of the Adams took place about 1922. Leonard
Hallady, born in 1872, has spent the last sixty or seventy years
living near the Boardman River . . ."
The pattern is: Adams
The Hair Stone is another of Halladay's patterns.
Hook: "Mustad #94840, #94833 or Orvis
Thread: Black - silk, monocord or nylon.
Tail: Two strands from a golden pheasant neck
Hackle: Mixed, from neck feathers of Barred
Plymouth Rock and Rhode Island Red roosters.
Wings: Narrow neck feathers of Barred Plymouth
Rock rooster, tied "advanced" forward and in a semi-spent
Many anglers have stated that if they had to use just one
dry fly it would be the Adams. A spent wing version is
an excellent fly to be used during a spinner fall.
While it is assumed the Adams is a mayfly imitation, it
was intended as a caddis imitation, and works equally well
Credits: quoted sections and information from Fly
Patterns and Their Origins by Harold Hinsdill Smedly,
published by Westshore Publications, and Trout and
Salmon Fly Index by Dick Surette's, published by