Jim Pfeffer is regarded by many as the premier lure maker in Florida. His classic designs and colorful paint patterns inspired many other Florida lure makers. Jim Pfeffer lures are still sought by fishermen today, though demand from collectors has made it impractical to fish with them on a regular basis.
The Florida lure "experts" don't always agree on which lure Pfeffer made first. Some argue that the Jim Pfeffer Sunfish was the first bait he ever made. Others say it was the Jim Pfeffer Banana lure. Pat Woodall said that the Shiner lure is the first of many famous lures created by Jim Pfeffer. The truth is that no one really knows for sure which lure came first, and it doesn't really matter anyway. Jim Pfeffer never did a catalog of his lures and he didn't do any advertising, so we'll probably never know for sure.
Jim Pfeffer also sold lures by mail order and through distributors. Since I now live in North Carolina, I will add the footnote that a Carolina distributor of Pfeffer lures was Pete Nash, who sold tackle in the Kannapolis / Concord, NC area. Nash was himself a lure maker and it is easy to see that some of his inspiration was drawn from Jim Pfeffer.
|The lures shown here are part of our collection. Click on the thumbnail pictures to see a larger image|
|Jim Pfeffer Orlando Shiner|
|The evolution of the Jim Pfeffer painting style is evident in the three Orlando Shiner lures shown here.
Numerous hand painted scales became fewer in number before they were masked and sprayed.
|This is a rather unique lure, as it is a paint patten not seen on any other Orlando Shiner. Similar scale patterns have been seen on other Jim Pfeffer baits. Pfeffer is known to have hand painted lines and patterns on other lures similar to the ones seen here.|
|Jim Pfeffer used a dark varnish on some of his lures, as seen on the Orlando Shiner on the left.
Collectors generally refer to them as dark varnish baits.
|Jim Pfeffer Midget & Spinning Shiner|
|The Jim Pfeffer Orlando Shiner was also made in Midget and Spinning Sizes|
|Jim Pfeffer Banana Lures|
|It is easy to see differences in older and later styles of Jim Pfeffer baits. You can probably see
differences in the eye paint pattern, as well as variations in paint masking and coloration.
|Two very early Jim Pfeffer Banana lures with simple screw
eye hardware. The bucktail was added by a fisherman.
|Jim Pfeffer found yellow and red to be effective fish catching
colors and used several variations on his Banana lures.
|These are some of my favorite colors of Jim Pfeffer Banana lures. Notice the unusual 2-hook rigging on the strawberry lure.|
|Banana lures were also made in smaller sizes like
the Midget Banana and Spin Banana seen here.
|These big Bananas are 6" and weigh nearly 3oz. The one on
the left is marked Jim Pfeffer & the other is a Goggleye Banana
|Jim Pfeffer Darter|
|The common darter is anything but common when it comes to Jim Pfeffer. A Pfeffer darter is rather hard to come by. The little lure on the right was named "Art's Special"|
|Jim Pfeffer Cripple|
|The evolution of the Jim Pfeffer painting style is evident in the three Cripple lures shown here. Numerous hand painted scales became fewer in number before they were masked and sprayed.||A smaller, spinning size was also made as the Spin Cripple|
|Jim Pfeffer Mullet|
|Jim Pfeffer Mullet in Mullet paint pattern.
This one was likely done by Vic Densmore.
| The Spin Mullet was a smaller,
|Jim Pfeffer Mullet in Santee paint pattern.|
|Jim Pfeffer Cast Top|
|The Jim Pfeffer Cast Top was a popular top water chugging lure, and was made in a wide assortment of colors.|
|Jim Pfeffer Spin Top|
|The Jim Pfeffer Spin Top was a smaller,spinning size of the Cast Top lure.|
|Jim Pfeffer Hud Chug|
|Jim Pfeffer named the Hud Chug lure after his good friend Walter Lee Hudson, Jr.|
|Jim Pfeffer Dilly|
|A lot of folks say that the Jim Pfeffer Dilly was the best trout lure ever made.|
|Jim Pfeffer Spin Dilly|
|The Dilly was also made in a smaller spinning size.|
|Jim Pfeffer Sailfish Shiner|
|The Jim Pfeffer Sailfish Shiner is a rather large lure at approximately 5" in length.
A Crippled Sailfish Shiner was also made, as seen in the last picture.
|Jim Pfeffer Packaging|
Envelope for Spinning Lures
|Jim Pfeffer lures were packaged in small manila envelopes. The earliest envelope showed P.O. Box 4164.
The box number was changed to 5164 on later envelopes. Several envelope sizes and styles were used over the years.
Most were stamped with the lure name. Some had hand written information about the lure name, color, style, etc.
Beware fake envelopes. They are out there!
|We are always interested in adding to this collection. Please send an email if you have any old Jim Pfeffer baits for sale or trade.
Visit my page about Antique Florida Lures to see other lure makers from Florida.