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In this month’s installment of Letters from Mary, we get a fascinating correspondence between Mary and noted bamboo rod authority Louis Marden, the legendary National Geographic photographer, writer, and explorer. The article Luis references in the letter was published in 1980 as “Bamboo: The Giant Grass” in NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC magazine. He followed this up with THE ANGLER’S BAMBOO, an acclaimed book on Tonkin cane that explored the history of bamboo fly rods. The two had a lengthly correspondence. — Ed.
LETTERS FROM MARY:
The Correspondence of Mary Kefover Kelly
Letter from Mary Kelly to Louis Marden dated Feb. 9, 1976 .....Truly, can not tell you how much I learned from it. First,
with regards malacca. This has confused me no end. Probably
because of Norris, himself. He was a man a few generations ahead of himself, also genius, philosopher, successful businessman — just about everything. Needless to say I admire him greatly (and if you have never read his book and the few articles he did for FOREST & STREAM, would recommend them). At any rate in retrospect having been making a mountain out of “malacca” cane. It is not surrounded in mystery — simply a mole hill, which I couldn’t see for looking.
And to digress a minute on Thad Norris. He was born in
1811 in Wheeling, (now West) Va.. He became a merchant in
Philadelphia; and at a period in history when most people never
travelled to the next town, Norris had at least one branch office in New Orleans, and if not on business, was travelling the country fishing. He was a user of the “dry” fly, and not only tied his own, but became an accomplished rod maker. Was also an early advocate of the split stick, and many a book and magazine article on amateur rod making was preferenced by giving credit to Thad Norris from whom the author had learned, this until 1910 -1915...... To enjoy this story in the April Issue and many others in their entirety please visit us at https://anglingechoes.com/