Thursday, June 9, 2016

Book of the Day: It's fishin' season, folks!

bass fishing.jpg

Bass Fishing in North Carolina (Haw River NC: Haw River Press, 1977; 1st ed.) Hardcover, Good in Good dust jacket.  Square, tight binding and hinges, clean and bright pages, no writing or marks. Slight foxing of exterior page edges (visible when book is closed). Very clean gray cloth over boards with minor edge rubbing at spine and tips of corners. DJ has light overall soiling, modest edge wear.  Classic work on bass fishing with many personal anecdotes. 8” x 5”. 242 pages. HBB price: $20 obo.

Buck Paysour (1932-2001) was a much-loved figure in Carolinas journalism for half a century. He got an early start, covering sports and taking photos for the Rock Hill paper at thirteen. After service as an engineer in Korea, he graduated UNC-Chapel Hill and launched his professional career; he freelanced for The New York Times, Atlanta Journal-Constitution; Chicago Tribune, and most North Carolina papers; was a bureau chief for The Charlotte Observer and an editor of Southern Textile News’ and in two stints at the Greensboro News & Record totaling nearly forty years, covered nearly every beat on the staff.

When he could get the time, Paysour headed out to eastern North Carolina to fish. One friend wrote of him,

Buck could use a fly rod with the best of them. He could use any kind of fishing gear. A broom handle, a piece of string and a safety pin would probably have been good enough. Anyone who could write three books on fishing in North Carolina, which Buck did, had to know what he was doing. It's possible no man has ever fished more of the waters of that state than Buck.

With Buck, though, there was far more to fishing than catching, and I thought about that last week as I watched that fisherman standing in the cool water of the Shoshone River.

Rev. Frank Dew read from the "North Carolina version" of the Bible a passage about Jesus, Simon Peter and Buck.

Dew said Jesus asked, "Friends, have you caught any fish?"

"No," they said. "We're fishing with Buck."

We all laughed, knowing we'd been there, but also knowing there was more to those fishing trips than hooking a big one.

Bass Fishing in North Carolina covers the entire state, largemouth and small bass alike. It’s also a great hymn to outdoor life by a man who knew how to spin words. Paysour wrote two other fishing books, The Tar Heel Angler (1991) and Fly Fishing in North Carolina (1995).

His favorite spot was near a landing at the Scranton Creek Bridge on US 264 in Hyde County. His ashes were scattered there, and in 2002 the county commission voted to name the bridge for him. A scholarship in environmental studies, and a park pond in Greensboro also bears his name.


Henry Bemis Books is one man’s attempt to bring more diversity and quality to a Charlotte-Mecklenburg market of devoted readers starved for choices. Our website is at Henry Bemis Books is also happy to entertain reasonable offers on items in inventory; for pricing on this or others items, kindly private message us. Shipping is always free; local buyers are welcome to drop by and pick up their purchases at our location off Peachtree Road in Northwest Charlotte if they like.

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