The American Museum of Fly Fishing (AMFF) is proud to announce that the state fly of Vermont is now on display at the Museum. A law was signed by the Vermont state legislature on May 5, 2014 making the Governor Aiken Bucktail Streamer the official state fly.
The Aiken Bucktail was originally tied in the 1930’s by Russell Merriman of Montpelier, who was a friend of then Vermont Governor George Aiken and developed the pattern along with an oil painting of the fly to be presented to the Governor. After retailer LL Bean brought the fly into the marketplace, the Aiken Bucktail became a popular trolling and casting fly for Northeastern trout and salmon. The fly has a rather glamorous existence; it has been given as a gift to Clark Gable and presented to local dignitaries in Slovakia along with other Vermont products by the country’s US Ambassador. Ted Williams even traded one of his signature Sears brand fishing rods for a Governor Aiken Bucktail.
In addition to being displayed in the Museum, the Governor Aiken Bucktail Streamer is also featured in Greg Carpenter’s book, What Makes Vermont Special: An in-depth look at Vermont State Symbols. The book is available for purchase at Northshire Bookstore right here in Manchester, Vermont. The AMFF would like to thank Rhey Plumley for contributing his tied version of the Aiken Bucktail to the Museum and for writing an article about it in our quarterly journal, The American Fly Fisher, to be published in early 2015.
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