The late Bill Norman established a name for himself by building an
internationally known fishing lure company, Norman Lures company in
Greenwood, Arkansas.Many people
have created fishing lures that caught fish, but few have also had the
ability to hook fishermen first.
Over his 20 year career, Norman had
the ability to anticipate and predict the future of bass fishing and
capitalize on it, to the benefit of the explosive bass fishing industry.
brought his boyhood love of fishing into his adult life when, after
serving in the military and some early work years, he took his fishing
interest into a business venture with Wood Lures, a Conway, AR, firm.
Lures had a proven track record selling a lure called the Spottail
Minnow lures that were made of cedar, balsa, and other woods were giving
way to plastic lures in the late 1960s and early 1970s.
It was about
this time that Norman joined the Fort Smith firm that became Plastics
Research and Development Company (PRADCO), where his experience with
assembly line methods worked well with other company employees knowledge
of plastics. It was also the heyday of the alphabet bass lures. The
pioneer Big O, carved from wood, shifted to plastic and drew rivals
called the Super R and later, Norman’s Big N.
Norman left PRADCO, he moved a few miles south to Greenwood and built
Norman Manufacturing. His moved coincided closely with the rapid growth
of organized bass fishing and the debut of bass tournament fishing as a
early pioneer, Norman looked at major bass tournaments as a route to get
his lures before the general public. He was among the first, if not
the first, to sponsor a Pro Team of professional anglers on the national
bass circuits and he competed himself in some of the early BASS events.
Throughout his life Bill Norman successfully assembled a staff of
innovators and pushed hard to remain a step ahead in the changing
fishing world, and today his Norman Little ‘N; DD22; the Tiny ‘N and
N-Ticer are standards in many anglers tackle boxes around the world.