(It's all about the Bass!)


Ohio Fishermen Remember Friend and Guide

       Community Press October 4, 1988

Who was Private Willie Revoy'? A World War II hero?    Perhaps, but there are no military documents to confirm a story like that about Willie Revoy. Then who was he? And what is the significance of the unusual dedication markings inscribed on his tombstone in a Marmora cemetery?

The inscription reads: "Private Willie Revoy - Friend Of The Ohio Fishermen."
Did Willie Revoy lose his life in a courageous effort to rescue the Ohio Fishermen?
No, Wllie Revoy was not a hero in that respect either. In fact, in this story it's the Ohio Fishermen who are the real heroes. Not heroes in the true sense of the word, but heroes none the less.

The story about the Ohio Fishermen and their connection with Bill Revoy began more than 27 years ago, when a group of 14 Columbus Mutual Life Insurance agents pinpointed the Crowe River, the spot to hold their new promotional vacations: A muskie fishing excursion, a reward earned by insurance agents who were pumping out more than average sales for the Columbus Mutual Life.

The Ohio Fishermen first hired Bill Revoy in 1961 as their fishing guide.

Bill had the reputation as being the best fishing guide in the area. Here was a man who could read the waterways" fish and the weather, better than most people can read a news- paper. Bill went after muskie with such enthusiasm never before witnessed by
the Ohio group. "Almost like he hated them with a passion, but he really didn't," says group organizer Henry (Hank) Leugers, the general agent who first came up with this particular promotional concept.

The group tell many stories about how their special friendship with Bill Revoy developed. Each heartfelt story the Ohio Fishermen relate ends with a sincere tone that reflects feeling like a family member is missing.
Some of you may remember Bill Revoy as the happy-go-lucky young fishing guide from Beaver Creek, who went off to war, only to return as a troubled man with a serious drinking problem. Some may remember him as one of the Beaver Creek River Rats and the trophies he won. from the club for fishing the biggest muskies. The Ohio Fishermen remember Bill Revoy for his friendship, dedication as a fishing guide and most of all, as a part of their family of fishermen whom they looked upon as the inspiration that kept them returning to the Crowe for 27 consecutive years now.

Marie explained that her mother and father were separated shortly after Bill returned. home with his war bride from England. "The separation. was mainly due to his drinking," says Marie.

Last year, when the Ohio Fishermen returned for another of their annual muskie fishing events, they noticed that Bill Revoy was buried in a Marmora Legion plot without a headstone. "Bills grave should be marked with a decent stone," says Virgal Moorman, the new sponsoring agent for the promotional trip. "He was one of our family," he said.

William Revoy as a boy,  at a cabin near Glen Allan Park


Bill Revoy was 64 years old when he died in February 1985. He had no money or other assets that could pay the expenses of a fancy burial. All he had was a filthy cabin on Beaver Creek. A cabin so filthy, that it took his daughter Marie two years to make it livable.
"My father had nothing but his fishing, his dog and his friendships with the many people he guided for, and he was happy. The Americans (Ohio Fishermen) treated my father extremely well. They also wrote to him and sent him gifts and things," says Revoy's daughter Marie Elvins.


Marie explained that her mother and father were separated shortly after Bill returned. home with his war bride from England. "The separation. was mainly due to his drinking," says Marie.

Last year, when the Ohio Fishermen returned for another of their annual muskie fishing events, they noticed that Bill Revoy was buried in a Marmora Legion plot without a headstone. "Bills grave should be marked with a decent stone," says Virgal Moorman, the new sponsoring agent for the promotional trip. "He was one of our family," he said.

With those words in mind, the 14 Ohio Fishermen set out to make the arrangements to have a decent headstone put on Bill Revoy's grave. This is only one story about the sensitivity of Henry (Hank) and Bob Leugers,
Virgal Moorman, Charlie and Chuck Hein, Pete and Ralph Stamen, Jim Moeller, Lowell McLear, Ted Bertke, Dick Rotherford, Ken Kramer, Dennis Raberding and Ken Berner, the 14 Ohio Fishermen. Their good deeds go unheard of in many communities, but this story deserved to be told, in memory of Bill Revoy, friend of the Ohio FiShermen.

World's Best Muskie Fisherman, Bill Revoy, presented by Beaver Creek River Rats




J. Marrin and William Revoy

Fishing Wm Revoy & Judge James Parker

Fishing Wm Revoy & Judge James Parker

Kelli Hewitt  writes:  All the neighbourhood kids would visit him and his dog at the house with fish heads on the front of it. We loved visiting him and he always have us caramels.                                                                    


The Boss Finds The Best Fishin' Hole

(By "Ack" in the Cleveland News of October 11, 1925)

This here expertin' gets to be the real thing when you gotta send your boss on a trip. You c'n pass out a certain amt.of baloney to most of the gang, and get away with it- whether they ketch any- thing or not.   Taint so with the boss.

"Listen here, son" sez he to me, "I'm a wantin a fishing trip. Got two days and a couple part days to do it in. Gimme the best or I'll sack you." SoI sent T. A. Robertson and his fishin' companion, J. S. Grant, up to Crowe Lake in Ontario. "An kid," sez he to me, "you keep your job. We got our limit of bass in an hour on four tries.

The 32 fish weighed 91 pounds. The biggest was 5 1/2 pounds, and on top of that we landed seven muskies." Just missed a wild running street car fined with rails, and now my job is safe forever. Hot cats! Robertson and Grant give all credit for their remarkable success to Walter Revoy and William Leonard, their guides. "The best guides we ever had and they certainly know their business."

Posies were also handed out by the anglers of the treatment accorded them by the Marmora Booster Club and by manager Neal, of the Royal Hotel. A bass luncheon of bass caught by T. A. and Mr. Grant was served the first of the week at the Statler round table. Seated at the festive board were Joseph Laronge, Ed. Bang, Max Rosenblum, Dr. W. H. Perry, Ernest Bang, former Govenor Harry L. Davis, Louis and Sam Deutsh, Manager Russell Keith of the Statler, T. A. Robertson and J. S. Grant.

"And" chimes in J. S. Grant, "I who's claimin' to be a expert at fishin', am here to say that words fail me in describin' this now Crowe lake trip."  Marmora Herald October 15,1925

Percy Cooper,  Fishing Guide

Ohio fishermen,  Mac James and henry leugers,  with guide forrest dennis

Marmora  Herald, Oct. 26, 1925

W.J. Keyes, of Toronto, Wins the Star's Black Bass Rod and Line
The twenty-fifth Toronto Star prize rod, reel and line is won this year by W. J. Keyes, of 117Evelyn Crescent, Toronto, for the best smaU mouth black bass caught with rod and line in Ontario. His fish, caught in Crowe Lake, at Marmora, on August 20 was as follows: Weight 61bs.9 ozs. Length 22  1/2 inches Girth 18 Ya inches The three judges in the contest had a difficult problem to solve this year. There were four fish so close,not so much in weight and length and girth, as in the inter-relation of all these three factors, that to select the "best" bass, as the contest calls for, called upon the whole experience and know- ledge of the three judges who are every one old-time bass fishermen. These judges were: Jos. T. Clark, editor of the Star and originator of the contest back in 1901; Ozark Ripley (John B. Thompson), the famous American authority on fish and fishing, and an officer in the Izaak Walton League, and John Mossop, managing director of AIIcock, Laight and West- wood, fishing tackle manufacturers. Crowe Lake, near Marmora, has figured in the Star contest in past years with some very splen- did bass, though never anything quite so fine as this winner of Mr. Keyes.


by Morris Ackerman

The May issue of the Cleveland Athletic Club Journal contains the following splendid tribute to Crowe Lake and District as a fishing and hunting resort. A good thing to remember And better thing to do Is work with the construction gang Not with the wrecking crew.

A catch by the ladies at tipperary hotel

It was some eight or ten years ago that Edwin G. Becker, "the father of Old Crowe," observed the above lines. They were written by an enthusiastic member of the Marmora Booster Club, sponsors of the piscatorial perfection of Crowe Lake musky and bass fishing. Becker not only joined the "construction gang" but had little difficulty interesting J. B. Lynn, Bayard Wright, Frank Maurer, Ben McCausland, Ira Farley, Tom Potts, Alex Wolf, L. W. Davis, C. J. Boldt, Dr. H. L. Spracking, Charles Dunn, Tom Batt, Harry Gresham, and his boyhood friend and business associate, Roger T. Peckinpaugh. All of these C.A.C. members have fished at Crowe Lake, not once but many times. Anyone of them will tell you that for fish, fun, feathers and fur,  this Ontario land of joy is the last word in an outdoorsman's book of knowledge.

Crowe Lake not only offers the best of musky and large and small month bass fishing but is easily reached by motor or rail as well. It is only 157miles east of Toronto and about forty miles east of Peterborough, on good motor road from that point. You can drive easily and quickly from Cleveland to the shore of the lake. The Canadian Pacific takes you over from Toronto to Bonarlaw. A taxi meets trains and runs you the eight miles to the lake in a jiffy.

The musky area of Ontario is comparatively well defined. It is bordered on the south by the St. Lawrence, and extends north to Algonquin Park, west to Georgian Bay and due south from there to Lake Erie. The next jump is hundreds of miles west- in the Lake of the Woods district. Crowe Lake stacks up with any musky ground in the eastern area.

1934  Boating Roger Peckinpaugh, Ford Woodhouse, Jean Gladney, Dorrie Marett, Walt Peckinpaugh, Lib Gladney

1934  Boating Roger Peckinpaugh, Ford Woodhouse, Jean Gladney, Dorrie Marett, Walt Peckinpaugh, Lib Gladney

Roger Peckinpaugh landed one there that weighed 23pounds. Beck caught a 19 pounder. Bill Schardt, the baseball pitcher, holds the Crowe Lake record - 28 pounds. Under the Ontario law the season opens June 16th and one is permitted to take four 'lunge per day. As for bass fishing, this lake is in a class by itself. I know of two Clevelanders who went up there last fall and caught their limit of eight bass per day in one hour on each of their two days there. The 32 fish weighed a total of 93 pounds. That's as good bass fishing as the world has to offer. On the way in and out, seven muskies were also landed.

Another catch made there that stacks up with any eastern Ontario 'lunge waters was made last season by the guide, "Phony" Shannon. In the short space of sixty minutes he hooked and landed three of these fresh water tigers that weighed 15, 19 and 21 pounds respectively. There's a little mark for the C.A.C. crowd to shoot at. Becker stands in the Crowe Lake position where another C.A.C. member R. B. Newcomb, does in the "making" of Tamogami. One put the southern Ontario grounds into the "Cleveland headquarters" group, the other the vast Northern Ontario forest reserve.

"Beck" and "Peck" were the first to build cottages at "Old Crowe." Since then Bayard Wright, J. B. Lynn and others have followed their lead. All winter Becker has been coaching the fIshing tyros of the Outlaws bowling team on the gentle art of playing the battling bass and mighty musky. The members are all het up and rarin' to go. They leave Cleveland on June 14th by motor.  In the group will be O.C. Wehe, Phil Arnold, E.J. Andrews, George W. Reese, Fred Appleton and the genial instructor and host. None of the guests have ever wet a line before. As a result of this Outlaw trip it's a sure bet that the Crowe Lake boosters will jump rapidly in number this season and it is quite likely that new cottages will shortly grace the shore line and islands of the beautiful lake.

Not only is the fishing far above the average but the wilderness contiguous to the lake abounds in game - ducks, geese,shore birds, grouse, deer, bear and furred game. It is a matter of record that the district stands out as the best black bear area known, at the present time, in eastern North America. The C.A.C. bear hunters go up there year after year and invariably return with the well known "bacon." Roger Peckinpaugh was up several years ago with Aaron Ward. Each of them bagged a bruin. That was the beginning of the bear hunting. Since then Bayard Wright, J. B. Lynn and several other club members have been piloted over the hard wood ridges and blueberry patches by those intrepid guides Sanford Lawrence and "Wild Bill" Thompson, with uniform success. The boys swear there are no better brace of guides in all of Canada.

1926 Percy Gray, Sandford Lawrence, Alphonso  "Phony"  Shannon

The Crowe Lake area provides almost any kind and style of fishing one may desire. Rocky and sandy shores, with boulders forming stony islands in many places make the ideal home for the small-mouth. Casting, trolling or still-fishing is equally successful. Even the lover of fly fishing has an excellent opportunity here. There are many bays and quiet waters where the weeds, rushes, cat tails and water lilies grow and there is the avowed home of the large-mouth. It is not unusual to snake out a five-pounder when casting the off shore of these native heaths of the green brother. Around the islands and in numerous beds of the lake the 'lunge weed runs riot. On the outer edges of these matted carpets the cast or troll tempts the slashing warriors to smash the very daylights out of your painted pet. This is the home of the musky; in the best lake for these fish in the whole musky belt. Flowing into the lake are numerous creeks and rivers. In these running streams the bass and musky may be battled by those who have mastered the art of placing a casting lure where they live. There is no better bet in the north country than these.

It's no wonder that Crowe Lake becomes more popular each Summer and Fall with C.A.C. members. That country has been recommended as the fishing and hunting district, par excellence, by men who know. It's all of that- and more.

This Fish Caught the Fisherwoman

No - it wasn't drowning that caused the yelling and screaming out on Crowe Lake over the weekend.  And no, it wasn't a near drowning either. But it was a fish - a Muskie to be exact - that caused all the excitement and the resulting noise.

It all happened when the three McGrath sisters went out fishing. The three, Angela Byrnes, Mary Callery and Margaret Casey, love fish- ing, and usually come home with a good catch. The muskie that caused all the excitement virtually caught them! Everything seemed perfectly normal when Mrs. Byrnes got a strike. But the fish apparently went head first into the anchor line, knocking off the lure.

But instead of streaking for freedom, it jumped right into the boat and right into Mrs. Byrnes' lap! Can you imagine the result? Eventually things calmed down enough for a measurement to be taken. The fish measured 24 inches - too small. The gals threw it back in. But if it happens again, the ladies mightn't be so generous. "After all,' noted Mrs. Casey, in relating the story to the Herald. "If the Lord giveth ... !"
Marmora Herald July 2,1975


Last Friday Messrs. G. Little and E. N. McDonald, of the Deer River Fish Hatchery, placed about one hundred good sized Lake Ontario black bass in Crowe Lake. The fish would measure 12to 18inches in length and were fine looking specimens. They were taken from Lake Ontario to provide spawn for the hatching operations at the Hatchery which were quite successful again this year. The addition of the Lake Ontario bass should further improve the quality of the bass in Crowe Lake as in fish propagation, as well as stock breeding, the addition of new blood generally proves an advantage. About the same number of adult bass were also placed in Belmont Lake. Deer River Hatchery is doing a fine job in helping to restock the waters of this district with trout, bass and lunge.
Marmora Herald, June 27 1940

Lunge Biting

Three nice lunge have been caught in Crowe Lake this week, each of them weighing about 20 Ibs.  A Mr. Kerr from Belleville
landed a 47 inch fish on Tuesday and Joe Murray and Jack Clairmont each got one on Wednesday, the one measuring 43 inches and the other 49inches.
Marmora Herald OcT. 10, 1957

Caught Big Bass - 1942

Four residents of Toronto visited George Wade's summer camp, just north of Beaver Creek bridge, for the week end and on Monday, James Stubbing, one of the party, caught one of the largest small mouthed black bass taken from Crowe Lake in several years. The fish was 21 inches, measured 16 inches around the girth and weighed about 6lbs. 10 ozs. It was caught almost opposite Dr. McMullen's summer home along the north shore of Crwe Lake. The bait used was a go-deep plug, also called a river runt plug, attached to a rod. The fish was very dark and a very fine specimen of small mouthed black bass.                   September 10,1942Marmora Herald


Fishing 1940  Pat Sullivan,  Mrs. Jim Marrin,  Margaret Sullivan, Jim Marrin,  Peanut McWilliams, Alfred McWilliams

Fishing 1940  Pat Sullivan,  Mrs. Jim Marrin,  Margaret Sullivan, Jim Marrin,  Peanut McWilliams, Alfred McWilliams