Len Thompson, a returned First World War soldier and farmer, developed his first fishing spoon in Abernethy, Saskatchewan, in 1929. After many years of trying all kinds of manufactured lures, he was convinced he could make a better spoon. He believed that the slow wobbling action which antagonized game fish into striking could be created with a more intricate combination of shape and weight. Always looking for better results, he carried a file and ball peen hammer in his tackle box to perfect his already very successful prototypes.
Len Thompson Bullet and Bait operated as a part time, winter business out of his farm until 1945 when Thompson decided to make a career change. He traveled to Toronto where he secured suppliers of brass, components, paint, packaging, and production equipment as well as hired his first professional tool and die maker. Within a few short months, he had a factory built and fully equipped. Len Thompson Bait Company entered into full time production in the village of Abernethy, Saskatchewan.
After a decade of impressive growth, Len & Myra Thompson and Myrtle & Cecil Pallister formed Thompson-Pallister Bait Co. Ltd and chose to relocate to Lacombe, Alberta in 1958. Lacombe was closer to suppliers and customers as well as offered many excellent fishing and hunting opportunities. Len Thompson continued to experiment and promote while his son-in-law Cecil Pallister refined the manufacturing processes.
Len Thompson passed away in 1979, but his name is carried to anglers on approximately 500,000 fishing spoons each year. Cecil Pallister presided over the business through the 1970’s and early 1980’s when he and Myrtle Pallister turned over ownership to their sons: Richard (President), Greg (Vice-President) and Syd (Controller).
In 1989 Syd Pallister, with Thompson-Pallister financial backing, purchased Gibbs/Nortac Industries of Burnaby, BC, Canada’s oldest and largest fishing lure manufacturer. In 1994, Thompson-Pallister purchased True North Electric Food Smokers and Accessories of Edmonton and moved it to their brand new 14,000 square foot manufacturing plant in Lacombe, AB.
Len Thompson’s versatile spoons continue to dominate the marketplace across the Canadian Prairies and Arctic. Perhaps best known as a Northern Pike lure, they have held world records in Lake Trout and Arctic Grayling as well as numerous provincial records in Walleye, Trout and other game fish. Famous for its Yellow & Red (Five of Diamonds) and Red & White models, the line has expanded to include "The Platinum Series", nickel plated spoons finished in very high contrast, often fluorescent paint jobs in today’s most desired patterns. Approximately 40 million lures have been produced in "Len Thompson’s" 80 year history.