Other Spec Baits
Robbie Pavey, AKA Mr. LureBox, shows a speck bait from the Fort Wayne Bait Company on his web site that is similar to the Night Hawk seen in reference books. The lure is yellow with large black spots. The shoulder appears to drop into the back just before or at the belly hook (more pictures would help, having the bait would be better ; ^). The angle of view obscures a clear view the lure's face, but it looks like the bottom jaw is cut short. The upper jaw has a greater length.
Mr. Pavey also displays a very similar box with a label proclaiming it is a Speck Bait from C.E. Beaird of Macy Ind, Nyona Lake. It appears that the box label is pasted over the top of a Fort Wayne Bait Company box lid. Mr. Pavey says it contains the same lure, though it's not shown. Interesting.
And there's more...
Karl White lists two Bert Whisler "Bass Killer"' baits in his book(1). Both lures are white with black specks and resemble a Night Hawk. What's more, one of the baits has a feature not seen in other specs. The larger bait has large black spots, and looks very much like other referenced Night Hawk baits. The shoulder appears long, but the picture's angle prevents further description.
The second Whisler Bass Killer is smaller, with smaller and more black specks. This lure has two side hooks and appears not to have a belly hook. Intersting. Mr. White does not list a location for the lure's maker, but says the date of the lures is 1934.
One lure, the Neal Speko, shows that the 'Spec' bait is a type and form of lure that is established and recognizable even if it's hard to identify the lure's origin 'spec'ifically at times.
The large amount of variation seen in baits that retain characteristic attributes that permit identifying them as a "type" or "class" of lure is what makes this fun. But how is it that there is so much variation? Who made which lures, and what relationships were there between the people who made them? Here are some musings of my own.
1. - Fishing Tackle Antiques and Collectables: Reference and Evaluation of Pre-1960 Tackle. 3rd. edition.
Karl T. White. 1995. [Luther OK] : Holli Enterprises. Page 137:B-14&15.