Don’t Stock Sebago With Togue and Stop the Fishing Derbies


Here’s an interesting letter from Alfred Rosenberg of Lisbon Falls, published in the September 1956 edition of The Maine Outdoorsman and Conservationist newspaper.

Arsenic and Old Lakes

After reading about the proposal of stocking togue in Sebago I just couldn’t sleep without writing to you about it and for others to hear likewise.

To put togue in Sebago would be like putting arsenic in my food, and that I wouldn’t want; so, as one salmon fisherman to another, and I think there are many others like myself, please don’t spoil such a lake as good old Sebago with so called “mud hens.”

To all my fishing sportsmen may I say that I have been fishing Sebago since 1930 and I consider it one of the finest lakes, from any standpoint, that we have in our entire state and have boasted about it from here to Fort Kent and in my travels everywhere as I am a salmon fisherman, first, last and always and shall always be such.

I will agree with anyone that the fishing at Sebago is not what it was in the past but fisherman themselves are in part to blame for this. They are continually seeking larger bag limits, when in my opinion two salmon a day should be enough for any fisherman, that is if we are willing to forget about deep freezers and the neighbors who should go out and catch their own fish for only then would they realize the time and effort not to mention loss of sleep and hours of traveling this sport of fishing represents.

In closing I would like to remind the togue addicts, and I fish for them myself at times, that I doubt very much if there is any person in Maine who lives too far from the great many togue waters in this State. So, let’s leave Sebago out of the commercial angle and while I am on this subject, let’s do away with all the fishing derbies as well. If the Portland people want more fish let them fish in the ocean. Why not?

I suggest that we, the people, make Sebago Lake the best Salmon and Squaretail waters in the State, but putting togue in would be the last straw for me. So tear up that petition and be more foresighted on this entire fishing situation which the State Department is trying to improve, if we let them.    

George Smith

About George Smith

George stepped down at the end of 2010 after 18 years as the executive director of the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine to write full time. He writes a weekly editorial page column in the Kennebec Journal and Waterville Morning Sentinel, a weekly travel column in those same newspapers (with his wife Linda), monthly columns in The Maine Sportsman magazine, two outdoor news blogs (one on his website,, and one on the website of the Bangor Daily News), and special columns for many publications and newsletters. Islandport Press published a book of George's favorite columns, "A Life Lived Outdoors" in 2014. In 2014, George also won a Maine Press Association award for writing the state's bet sports blog. In 2016, Down East Books published George's book, Maine Sporting Camps, and Islandport Press published George and his wife Linda's travel book, Take It From ME, about their favorite Maine inns and restaurants.