Field & Stream pins awards were provided by the Magazine for about 40 years to fishermen that caught and registered their fish with them. The contest was announced in the January, 1911 magazine issue. The fish had to meet a minimum weight requirement. In the 1910’s, Field & Stream awarded silver trophy cups to the fishing contest winners. From 1937 to 1977, Field and Stream would send you a badge if you met their minimum size requirements and documented it on their application form. The program started out with 17 different fish categories for prizes the first year then expanded to 25 fish the second year. In 1962, this was expanded to 74 fish species and later to 80 species.
The earliest badges have no markings other than “Field & Stream”. The weight of the fish was on the back of the badge. Later, applicants that met the minimum requirements would get a badge marked “Honor Badge” and the winner for the year in each category would receive an “Award” badge. The weight of the fish was also stamped on the back of the badge. The older badges are found in bronze and sterling silver. Later badges were awarded in gold, silver and bronze. The large mouth bass badges below show some of the variation in markings and metal. The stylized bass is the earliest one and the realistic one came later.
Field & Stream also included badges for other sports. From 1937 to 1941, they included Award pins for Trap and Skeet for 50, 75 and 100 straight hits. In 1950, they added Honor and Award badges for Big-Game animals. Field & Stream also added a “First Bird” category. You could send in affidavit form for 6 species of birds. There was also an Honor Badge for Wild Turkey.
The list below summarizes the time spans to help recognize when a badge was made.
- 1937 to 1977 – 40 years for all pins
- 1937 to 1945 – 8 years of pins blank and not marked “Award” or “Honor Badge”
- 1946 to 1977 – 32 years of pins marked either “Award” or “Honor Badge”
- 1962 to 1977 – 15 years of gold and silver pins awarded
Field & Stream Pin Collection Display Shown in the June, 1972 Magazine
Field & Stream Pin Collection
Large Mouth Bass Pin Variations
Offshore Game Fish Pin Variations
Intercostal and Bay Fish Pin Variations
Northern Stream and Lake Fish Pin Variations
Albacore, Bluefish, Bonefish, Skipjack Tuna, Jack Crevalle, Weakfish Pins
1911 Postcard Showing Field & Stream Award Winner
October 1912 Field & Stream Picture of Award Cups
September 1937 Field & Stream Contest Ad
January 1938 Field & Stream Contest Ad
Field & Stream 1938 Skeet & Trap Contest Ad
Field & Stream 1960 Big-Game Contest Ad
March 1962 Field & Stream Magazine Cover
Field & Stream 1971 Contest Application
Field & Stream 1974 Award Pin Display
Field & Stream 1977 Award Pin Display
Another Great Antique Vintage Fishing Tackle Link: