25-pounder reinstated as the walleye of walleyes

  • Article by: DOUG SMITH , Star Tribune
  • Updated: May 25, 2010 - 7:27 PM

Mary Harper displayed the 25-pound, 41-inch walleye caught by her husband, Mabry, in 1960 in Tennessee’s Old Hickory Lake.

At a whopping 25 pounds, the pot-bellied, 41-inch-long walleye looks as though it belongs in a freak show. Could one really grow that big?

Yes, says the Fresh Water Fishing Hall of Fame in Hayward, Wis., which has reinstated the monster as a world record.

As with many old records, this one came with controversy. The whopper was caught in 1960 in Old Hickory Lake in Tennessee by Mabry Harper. In 1996, however, the hall of fame removed it from its records, based on a report that claimed the walleye couldn't have measured as long as claimed. "The thrust of this report was a comparison of the length of his fish to an assumed size of Harper's hands," the hall of fame reported.

But officials said the actual size of Harper's hands was unknown. The hall decided to do an internal review of its 3,000 world records over the past several years and investigated the Harper walleye. It said a Tennessee historical society presented key evidence. "Once we delved through this new documentation, we realized it not only greatly supported the Harper walleye's validity, but it also disproved the theory which led to the walleye's removal in 1996," the hall said.

Evidence included a photo of the walleye's head with a ruler atop it and a 1960 affidavit from a Tennessee game warden attesting that he had checked the scale on which the walleye was weighed and measured it himself.

Last week, the hall of fame reinstated the walleye as the all-tackle world record. The International Game Fish Association also lists it as their all-tackle world record.

The 25-pound behemoth is 7 1/2 pounds heavier than Minnesota's record walleye, a 17 1/2-pound walleye caught in 1979 in the Seagull River in northeastern Minnesota.

Doug Smith • dsmith@startribune.com

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

Click here to send us your hunting or fishing photos – and to see what others are showing off from around the region.

ADVERTISEMENT

New England 7 2nd Qtr 0:49
Seattle 7
Miami 83 FINAL
Boston 75
LA Lakers 80 FINAL
New York 92
Arizona 3 FINAL
Montreal 2
St. Louis 4 FINAL
Washington 3
Nashville 4 FINAL
Pittsburgh 0
Minnesota 4 FINAL
Vancouver 2
Miami-Florida 54 FINAL
Florida State 55
Oakland 96 FINAL
Youngstown St 80
Cincinnati 46 FINAL
East Carolina 50
Michigan 66 FINAL
Michigan State 76
Marist 75 FINAL
Canisius 67
Fordham 77 FINAL
Dayton 101
Manhattan 87 FINAL
Monmouth 76
Quinnipiac 100 FINAL
Niagara 105
Utah 67 FINAL
USC 39
Connecticut 68 FINAL
Houston 70
California 90 FINAL
Washington 88
North Dakota St 64 FINAL
Western Ill 62
Penn State 65 FINAL
(22) Rutgers 76
(14) Texas 59 FINAL
TCU 64
Coll of Charleston 49 FINAL
Towson 71
Cornell 53 FINAL
Yale 60
Xavier 68 FINAL
Providence 57
Drexel 61 FINAL
UNC-Wilmington 44
Stony Brook 60 FINAL
New Hampshire 52
Maine 52 FINAL
Albany 44
Miami-Florida 66 FINAL
Pittsburgh 81
(21) Georgia 72 FINAL
(10) Kentucky 80
Arizona 69 FINAL
Colorado 81
Wake Forest 63 FINAL
(4) Notre Dame 92
Loyola-Chicago 56 FINAL
Illinois State 72
(24) Oklahoma 69 FINAL
West Virginia 78
St Johns 73 FINAL
Seton Hall 78
Delaware 73 FINAL
Hofstra 62
Binghamton 49 FINAL
UMass Lowell 66
Vermont 49 FINAL
Hartford 60
William & Mary 72 FINAL
Northeastern 66
Boston College 60 FINAL
(16) North Carolina 72
Virginia 77 FINAL
Clemson 72
(2) Connecticut 83 FINAL
Temple 49
Arkansas 53 FINAL
Alabama 42
Virginia Tech 71 FINAL
Georgia Tech 79
Kansas 58 FINAL
(3) Baylor 66
Canisius 51 FINAL
Rider 52
Monmouth 52 FINAL
Fairfield 54
Quinnipiac 81 FINAL
Saint Peters 50
Butler 55 FINAL
Creighton 62
Wichita State 61 FINAL
Drake 64
Evansville 52 FINAL
Indiana State 67
(18) Miss State 67 FINAL
(6) Tennessee 79
Villanova 47 FINAL
DePaul 49
Georgetown 73 FINAL
Marquette 80
North Texas 55 FINAL
Rice 58
Auburn 45 FINAL
(12) Texas A&M 78
(11) Arizona State 58 FINAL
Utah 48
Missouri State 56 FINAL
Northern Iowa 64
Michigan 60 FINAL
(15) Nebraska 75
Minnesota 49 FINAL
Northwestern 70
Wisconsin 73 FINAL
Illinois 62
Bradley 59 FINAL
Southern Ill 76
Florida 67 FINAL
Vanderbilt 58
(20) Iowa 88 FINAL
(5) Maryland 93
(1) South Carolina 77 FINAL
Ole Miss 59
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Should the lake where the albino muskie was caught remain a mystery?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close