An extremely scarce example of a 1st Era Goodwin Granger Premier in Very Good+, ALL ORIGINAL condition. The rod maintains original coat of red varnish indicative of 1st Era Grangers. The wraps are black and white jasper tipped in gold. The sliding band nickel silver reel seat states “GRANGER PREMIER”. Perfection tip tops and tungsten steel guides. Original Tournament-style/modified Full Wells grip. Original olive bag (in outstanding condition) and original brass capped aluminum tube with correct (95%) label.
ABOUT THE GRANGER PREMIER
The Granger Premier grade was first introduced in the 1st Era along with the DeLuxe and the Special. The first recorded mention of the Premier appears in Granger’s 1922 advertisements. Premier rods from the 1st Era have varying signature wrap patterns and guides are wound in black & white jasper tipped in gold plus 3 additional gold bands (like the later DeLuxe rods.)
The Premier grade name disappeared in the 2nd and 3rd Eras, but was revived in 1930 as the highest grade available. The 1931 Catalog describes the Premier this way:
“The Granger Premier is the finest rod we build. Its perfect balance, quick action, and maximum power per ounce or weight, satisfy the most exacting fisherman. the colorful beauty of its golden-brown finish, and the obvious quality of workmanship and materials win your instant admiration.”
Goodwin Granger Premier rods of the 4th Era were available in 7 1/2′ to 10′ lengths (3 oz. to 6.5oz.) and priced at $50. Tournament models were available in 9′ and 9.5′ lengths. Each was outfitted with a sliding band reel seat with “GRANGER PREMIER” inscribed between two knurled bands. Grips were Coke Bottle shaped. Windings were simple—single gold wraps with no trim.
Changes to the Premier rods in the 5th Era included the new uplocking reel seat and a Western (Reverse Half-wells) style grip.
The Premier remained the top grade in the Granger lineup until the introduction of the Registered in the 1939 Catalog. Production of the Goodwin Granger Premier grade lasted until the company closed its doors during WWII in 1941.
Wright & McGill Rod Co. purchased Granger Rods in 1946 and resumed production of the Premier grade beginning with the 1947 Catalog. It was offered in 7.5′ to 9.5′ lengths (3.75 oz. to 6.0oz.) and priced at $75. Interestingly, the 1947 W&M Catalog also shows two 9′ Tournament models offered in the Premier grade. The Premier made its final appearance in the 1952 W&M Catalog.
GOODWIN GRANGER ADVERTISING IN THE IST ERA (1919 – 1922)
While Goodwin Granger may have started building rods as early as 1914, the first ads to offer them for sale began in April of 1919.
The first ads from 1919 were simple and small—about 2″ wide. Granger considered the dry climate & elevation in Denver as a unique selling point and also touted a better power-to-weight ratio than “other rods”. It seems as if he was trying to differentiate himself from the East Coast rod makers of the day. Even these first ads from 1919 mention the availability of a catalog, yet none have surfaced to date. (If you know of any catalogs from this time period, please contact us.)
Ads from 1920 and 1921 highlight a more refined approach. Granger encourages customers to “Send me an order… that suits your pocketbook, tell me the kind of fishing for which you wish to use the rod… and I’ll send you a rod that will satisfy you in every respect.” This suggests that Granger was perhaps willing to customize rods for his customers’ needs. An ad from March 1921 also supports this: “There is a Granger rod for every kind of fishing. Special rods made to order.” There may have been as many as 4 grades offered before 1921 (4 prices listed in June 1920 ad), but that was reduced to 3 grades by March 1921. Interestingly, the 1921 ads all suggest that there may be another early color Goodwin Granger catalog: “Send for free circular, with rods illustrated in actual colors.” (Again, if you know of any catalogs from this time period, please contact us.)
Goodwin Granger himself was experimenting with rod design during this time—especially in 1921 when he was introduced to the sport of Tournament Casting.
Ads from 1922, discuss the “new Deluxe and Premier models.” The earliest 1st era rods were all labeled “The Granger Rod”—regardless of grade. It is believed that standardizing the model names at this time was an easier way to sell and market the differences between the rods that Granger offered at the time.
All ads list “GOODWIN GRANGER & CO.” as the business entity and the addresses is consistent in this era at “East Ninth Ave., Denver, Colorado”.
You might notice that a different street number was assigned to each publication on all Granger ads. This was done to accurately track the responses for the same ad across different publications.