Welcome to 'just old flies,' a section of methods and flies that
used-to-be. These flies were tied with the only materials
available. Long before the advent of 'modern' tying
materials, they were created and improved upon at a
far slower pace than todays modern counterparts;
limited by materials available and the
Once long gone, there existed a 'fraternity' of anglers
who felt an obligation to use only the 'standard' patterns
of the day. We hope to bring a bit of nostalgia to these pages and to
you. And sometimes what you find here will not always be
about fishing. Perhaps you will enjoy them. Perhaps you
will fish the flies. Perhaps?
Part One hundred-thirtyone
Dressed by Chief Needahbeh
Compiled by Deanna Birkholm
Archive of Old Flies
Chief Needahbeh (promounced Ne-DAH-ba) was the proprietor
of Needahbeh's Shack, a tackle shop at Moosehead Lake
in Greenville, Maine. A Native American Penobscot, he
was also known as Chief Roland Nelson and frequently
demonstrated his native traditions at sporting shows.
The fly was, of course, originated by the Chief, who
also dressed the fly without a tail or secondary
throat, and with orange hackles in the wing instead
of red. He said the later version was especially good
on dark days and that both flies are good for smallmouth
and largemouth bass, as well as for the trout and landlocked
salmon for which the fly was originally intended.
The recipe is: Chief Needahbeh
Credits: pattern and photo from
Streamer FlyTying & Fishing by Joseph
D. Bates, Jr. published by Stackpole Books.
Tag: Narrow flat silver tinsel.
Tail: A section of red duck or goose wing feather.
Body: Red silk. (The original version, as
dressed by Chief Needahbeh, has a red hackle "throat" one-third of
the way forward on the body. A similar effect could be obtained by
palmering a red hackle, but is was not done in this case. The purpose
of the "throat" evidently was to give greater action to the fly.)
Ribbing: Narrow flat silver tinsel.
Throat: A red saddle hackle tied on as a collar
after the wing has been applied. It is dressed rather full.
Wing: A red saddle hackle on each side of two
yellow saddle hackles.
Cheeks: Jungle cock, rather short.
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