By Louie Stout
Randy Whiteman loves a challenge.
That’s why he loves fishing muskies and has devoted his time collecting antique fishing tackle produced by the former South Bend Bait Company.
“Muskies and antique South Bend Baits share something in common – they are both hard to find,” joked the Wakarusa angler. “If something is easy, I tend to lose interest.”
He’s had quite a bit of success at both. He’s caught several 50-inch muskies from Indiana waters and has one of the rarest, if not most extensive South Bend Bait collections in the country.
From the early 1900s until the early 60s, South Bend Baits were among the most coveted by anglers. The company was best known for its Bass-Oreno, but other popular items include the South Bend Minnow, Fish-Oreno, Pike-Oreno, to name a few.