In the Shadow of Giants
“Turkey hunting has many icons, people who have contributed heavily to the tradition upon which this grand subculture of ours is built. In this book, Jim Casada has chronicled the stories of 27 of them. What true, dedicated turkey hunter hasn’t heard of people like Simon Everitt, Tom Turpin, Dwain Bland, Dave Harbour and Frank Piper? What hunter hasn’t, at some time, wanted to know more about these and other heavy hitters of yesterday?”
This endorsement by author Jim Spencer for Jim Casada’s book, Remembering the Greats, is a great encapsulation of what Casada has accomplished. In his patent storytelling manner, he puts us directly in the shadow of giants, those true “turkey men,” in whose footsteps we faithful legion of turkey hunters now march.
Jim Casada is a “son of the Smokies,” having been born in 1942 in Bryson City, NC, and spending his entirety of years living in the Carolinas. He is unequivocally qualified to tell the story of turkey hunting’s legendary figures. His pedigree as a historian and author is anchored with a Ph. D. in history from Vanderbilt University. Casada has earned a host of awards for his writing and photography, including being the National Wild Turkey Federation’s 2007 Communicator of the Year. Jim literally wrote the book on wild turkey literature, “The Literature of Turkey Hunting,” which is a priceless guide for those seeking to identify or collect wild turkey books. He also carries scores of years of mental battle scars and wisdom from hunting engagements with the wild turkey. All of this ability is utilized in delivering to us the “Remembering The Greats: Profiles of Turkey Hunting’s Old Masters.”
Far from being a sycophantic book simply extolling the virtues of these legends, Casada honors their memory by telling the truth of these men. The “seamy side,” as Casada calls it, of these men is not presented disrespectfully. But, as we witness their murder, personal debt, bad business deals and sometimes cantankerous natures, we can see ourselves in their imperfections. Too, we identify with their enthusiasm for turkey hunting across the country, telling their stories through writing books, perfecting turkey callers, and giving their minds and sweat to establishing the hunting methods and turkey populations we so enjoy today.
Discover the tenacity of M.L. Lynch in establishing his turkey calling empire, and how the wild turkey infused every aspect of “Old Flintlock” Archibald Rutledge’s life. Find appreciation in Earl Mickel’s obsession with turkey calls, thus creating an explosion of call collectors, and in the accomplished natural-voice caller Jack Dudley, whose celebrated turkey-hunting book, “The Greatest Moments of My Life,” can set you back a cool one grand! We cherish the books and calls left behind to us by Wayne Bailey, Kenny Morgan, Doug Camp, Ben Rodgers Lee, Neil Cost and Dick Kirby. Come! Meet them all, and others, in this delightful book that is embellished with over 100 vintage photos that bring to life our sport’s dearly departed icons.
“Remembering The Greats” and other books by Jim Casada are available at https://www.jimcasadaoutdoors.com/.