Richardson Rod & Reel Co. – Chicago, IL

Richardson Rod & Reel Co. bought out the Talbot Reel & Mfg. Co. in 1920. The tooling and residual reel parts were moved from Kansas City, MO to Chicago, IL. There they made standard Talbot reels and also made special free-spool reels for tournament casting. The reels sold by the company were a limited production. The reels were assembled mostly by parts acquired from the Talbot Reel & Mfg. Co. In addition to the reels, the company made a wide range of fishing equipment including rods and landing nets. Richardson Rod & Reel Co. is considered one of the great early reel makers in the USA.

Talbot History – The earliest Wm. H. Talbot reels were made in Nevada, MO from about 1895 to 1913. The first models made in Nevada were marked No. 2, 3 or 4 and had four screws attaching the head plate to the reel frame. Talbot received a patent in January 22, 1901 for a design that incorporated only three screws to attach the head plate. The top of the line model was marked No. 50. This model had clear sapphire jeweled bearings and an ivory knob. The forerunners of this high quality reel were the Levison Special and the Talbot Special. These models are very scarce. Other scarce models were the Talbot No. 60 and No. 75. The Niangua is also a high quality reel and was made with and without jeweled bearings. The most desirable reel for collectors is the Ben Hur fly reel. It came in two sizes and are considered very scarce. His bottom of the line of reels (if there is a bottom of the line for Talbot) are named after heavenly bodies like Meteor, Mars and Comet. These reels can also be found with and without garnet jewels for spool bearings. Talbot also marked his standard reels with the names of sporting goods and hardware stores stores like Gus Habich in Indianapolis, VIM in Chicago and Schmelzer Arms Co. in Kansas City.

In 1913 the company name Wm. H. Talbot Reel Co. was changed to Talbot Reel & Mfg. Co. and was moved to Kansas City, MO. The top of the line reels were the No’s 52, 53 and 54 with the second digit being the reel size. Talbot also made the size No’s 2X, 3X and 4X series reels. The second digit “X” on these reels signified what options came with the reel. The Niangua, Meteor, Comet and Star models were also made by the company while in Kansas City, MO. Richardson Rod & Reel Co. was the last to make Talbot reels.

The RICHARDSON Wm. STANLEY MODEL TALBOT Free-Spool Reel, Chicago, IL, circa 1922



The RICHARDSON No. 2 Size Narrow Spool Tournament Reel, Chicago, IL, circa 1922

The RICHARDSON TALBOT METEOR Reel, Chicago, IL, circa 1922

1922 Ads For The RICHARDSON ROD & REEL CO. TALBOT Reels, Chicago, IL

Richardson Rod & Reel 1923 Catalog Page

RICHARDSON ROD & REEL Co. 1923 Catalog Page