I grew up in Bradenton fishing for grouper, trout, mackerel and sheepshead. Snook were few and far between back then and I had no clue there was this thing called a tarpon. After school at Georgia Tech, Virginia Tech, and UVA and an 8 year stint in DC, my wife and I settled in Tampa in 1993. We've been here ever since.

I have two teenage daughters. One at Clemson and the other heading to UF. My wife is a state Senator.

When not hunting and fishing, I'm a senior partner in a private equity firm focusing on the lower middle market.

I spend my spare time hunting (locally for deer and turkey and traveling for whatever calls) and fishing for tarpon. We spend 3 months every summer in Boca Grande. I've fished all of the places that hosted the earliest anglers in the late 1800s and early 1900s. My love of tarpon fishing and my love of Charlotte Harbor spurred my interest in the history of the sport.

I collect anything that has to do with the early days of tarpon fishing in SW Florida and the Keys. Lures, reels, rods, hooks, books, ads, magazines, awards, old signed scales, you name it. Many of you have probably seen parts of my collection from posts on Joes Old Lures and OldFloridaLures.com. I took several years off and one of your members here got me going again after a couple of great trades.

Here is my center console from which we do most of our tarpon fishing. It's a tarpon machine.

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Here's the anchor of my collection, Faithful II, a 1965 Knight Brothers Boca Grande Pass boat with her sister, Casurina.

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Cheers

Matt