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Posted: Tue Jul 30, 2019 7:19 pm 
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Location: Salisbury, NC

Looking for a James L. Van Uxem reel marked "Geneva" as shown made by Montague. I was outbid on one a few years ago


Posted: Tue Jul 30, 2019 7:52 pm 
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Joined: 10/24/03
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Location: Frostproof, FL
Ooooo, that's a scarce reel and very nice.


Posted: Fri Aug 30, 2019 2:53 pm 
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Bump. still looking.


Posted: Fri Aug 30, 2019 3:21 pm 
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Well, shoot, i got the reel for you, Don, but wrong verbage! This one is marked “ New Record Casting Reel!




Posted: Fri Aug 30, 2019 3:50 pm 
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I read Don’s post about the Jas. Van Uxem reel with great interest. I was intrigued by the name van Uxem and wanted to learn more about the man. The name sounded familiar to me, but I just could not place where I had heard it. Uxem, Uxem – why does that name sound so familiar? I wanted to know more.

Fortunately, one of the new research tools available to collectors is the Google Books database. It contains a wealth of information about early tackle companies and the history of fishing. After searching a variety of fishing tackle phrases and scrolling through the documents, I was finally able to locate an obscure reference to Mr. Van Uxem. His name was mentioned in a 1922 Christmas edition of the Chicago Observer Newspaper. Apparently, he not only owned one of the largest sporting goods stores in the city, but was also quite the socialite. According to the article, getting invited to his annual Christmas party was a way of proclaiming your social status amongst the Chicago elite.

The article also made mention of another interesting fact. Apparently, Mrs. Van Uxem was a ravishing lady. She had beauty, wit, charm and was well-versed in the social graces. One of her noted, and often admired, features was her voluptuous figure. This inherited trait was carried on by their three beautiful daughters. It was not uncommon to hear people when referring to the young ladies with the words, “yeah, you can tell she’s an Uxem.”

In Chicago in the 1920’s, it was not uncommon to compliment a beautiful woman by telling her “you’re an Uxem.” It carried with it an air of admiration and social status. As history tells the story, unfortunately, the late 1920’s was the Great Depression. During this time, the Van Uxem sporting goods store and the family’s social nightlife came to an end. With the depression, also came a loss of the original meaning of some of the local colloquialisms.

By the 1930’s, the description of the physical attributes of a well endowed lady had evolved and the original meaning lost. She was no longer referred to as an “Uxem” but as being “Buxom.” To this day, the respectful description of a lady of being “buxom” is still used to describe a woman ample in figure especially in the bosom.

Anyone who has a Jas. Van Uxem reel not only has a beautiful, quality fishing reel, but also a part of American history. If you have one, you should display it proudly and prominently. Not every collector has a nice Uxem.

Good luck, and happy collecting.


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