Deer Hunting 100 Years Ago.

100 years ago — there weren’t too many deer running around the woods …. at least in Pennsylvania. Deer were scarce and the mere sighting of a deer would have made the local paper in some regions. Needless to say, if a hunter was fortunate enough to actually kill a deer, the proud hunter would head to Main Street and pose with the trophy receiving praise from all the town folk. After decades of deforestation as the Eastern US timber was harvested to build a growing nation, the lumber industry fell on slow times with the timber resource exploited. Towns built around the lumber industry shut down and regrowth promoted a slow reemergence of the whitetail population. Conservation ideology was developing. In 1913 archives, I observed references that limited a hunter to a 1 deer limit, male deer only and antlers that were at least 2″ and visible.

Hawley, PA over 100 years ago. 
50 years ago, shooting a deer was still a very, very special event. As a youngster, I recall the opening day of rifle season in Virginia when my best friend and I were both successful killing 7 point buck deer. John shot a big one and we felt it was important to get the “huge” deer weighed for posterity. Being only 16 years old, shooting a deer was a monumental event that would even make the high school newspaper. To make a long story short, we headed to the local Safeway Supermarket, Meat Department and told the butcher we shot a very nice buck and asked if he would be willing to weigh the deer for us. He said “sure, just drag it right back here, front door is fine.”  That butcher must have been a limited government gent because there appeared to be no rules. So we awkwardly pulled the big buck down the aisle of canned goods by a rope (much to the alarm of an elderly lady who was doing evening shopping) and put the deer on a scale — the weight is now forgotten ….. and then dragged the buck back through the supermarket to the 1966 Mustang in the parking lot. That deer was prominently displayed on the rear trunk for the trip home. Those were the good ole days …seriously. 

This buck traveled up and down the “canned goods” Safeway Supermarket aisle in Northern
Virginia to get weighed. Times were sure different in 1969. 

Today, deer seem to be everywhere. Here is a photo of nice buck walking through an apartment complex not far from Kodabow headquarters recently. We are fortunate to be living in remarkable hunting times and it is appreciated at Kodabow. 

Walking through the Apartment Complex, West Chester, PA 2016

Bob killed this nice buck this year
with his Kodabow – not far from Hawley, PA!

It is hard to kill a deer. There is always a two part problem. You need to find the deer which is part A. Then you need to kill the deer which is Part B. The second part is the hardest because far too many unexpected events can happen especially in the final few seconds when pulling the trigger is required. Bob, pictured with this fine 2016 deer,  will tell you that the buck appeared quickly during the rut and was about to disappear in the brush when he used his Kodabow with no time to spare.  A crossbow makes it easier to manage those final seconds — and we are pleased to hear that some hunters use a Kodabow to take their first deer. It is a great choice. While times have changed, some things remain the same. Much like Hawley, PA in 1913, a hunter is still limited to one male deer a year in Pennsylvania. We enjoy the longer seasons and opportunities to hunt frequently using different tools. In 2016, the Kodabow boys have spent most of our time hunting deer with traditional recurves. I know — some think we are crazy! But in the morning, I will pull out my trusty Kodabow (even though it’s firearms season) and expect a good opportunity to fill a doe tag and put meat in the freezer. The mornings are cold and it will be a short trip to the butcher. It is still too early to shoot a buck —- after all, Rifle Season is still open this weekend. Flintlock Season opens the 26th of December for two weeks  — and Archery Equipment (both recurve, compounds and Kodabow crossbows) can be used in this area until January 28th.  Oh…my goodness! What a great time to be alive and be a hunter.
My best,
Chuck at Kodabow HQ