South Alabama’s Favorite Short Company Turns 60

American Fishing Tackle Company (AFTCO) is celebrating 60 years! This great company has been family owned and operated since 1958. They have always stood for two things: innovation and conservation. Their innovative products have been proven to deliver excellent performance on the water. Also, this company’s passion for the great outdoors goes far beyond offering fishing product. AFTCO has a commitment to protecting fishing resources and angler rights. Through their 10% Pledge to Protect and Conserve, any AFTCO purchase that you make directly supports conservative initiatives. We love being able to carry product from this fantastic company and are so excited for them as they celebrate 60 years!

The history behind AFTCO is absolutely inspiring and interesting. A man by the name of J.C. Axelson founded the Axelson Fishing Tackle Company (AFTCO) in 1958. He had a passion for fishing, but as an angler he could not find roller guides to match his quality standards, so he made his own! He did so in the basement of a waterfront home on Lido Island in Newport Beach, CA. How cool is that?! Five years later, in 1963, husband and wife, Milt and Peggie Shedd founded the Mission Bay Research Foundation, later renamed the Hubbs-Seaworld Research Institute. Milt Shedd was such a huge visionary and had a great love for the ocean. Shedd then went on to co-found Seaworld in 1964, and then took the position as Seaworld Chairman of the board until his retirement in 1985. Years later, in 1973, the Shedd family purchased AFTCO from Mary Axelson, the widow of J.C. Axelson. In 2000, AFTCO gained its official name as the American Fishing Tackle Company. The family went on to do amazing things for the fishing community in the following years, and still continue to do so now.

AFTCO’s 10% Pledge to Protect and Conserve is quite fascinating and remarkable. This was inspired by the former company Chairman, Milt Shedd, and his passion for the sea. The Shedd family has a passion for the ocean and the many creatures that abide in it. It is evident at how passionate they are by looking at how big their conservation efforts are, and the countless conservation organizations that they have partnered with. A few of their key conservation partners include: Center for Sportfishing Policy (CSP), Coastal Conservation Association, Keep America Fishing, Hubbs Seaworld Research Institue, The International Game Fish Association, Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation (GHOF), and American Sportfishing Associations.

We have carried AFTCO for several years and have always had great success with this brand due to their unparalleled quality and reliability. Being close to many lakes, and of course the ocean, lots of men and boys enjoy wearing the AFTCO fishing shorts. The men’s shorts come in two lengths – 8” and 6”. They also come in a variety of colors. Men’s AFTCO fishing shorts retail for $54.95, while Boy’s AFTCO fishing shorts retail for $49.95.


AFTCO also makes very comfortable t-shirts that are perfect to take with you for a day on the water. Many of their tees feature different types of fish, like the ones shown below. The gray Men’s Short Sleeve Superstriper Tee  with the marlin on the back retails for $19.95, and the Boy’s Short Sleeve Aflag Tee retails for $16.95.


The story and history of AFTCO is incredible. This company has come such a long way in 60 years. Their unwavering commitment to protecting fishing rights, and preserving the ocean is absolutely inspiring and wonderful. Again, we cannot express how much we adore this company and the impact they have made. 60 years is a huge milestone! Way to go AFTCO, we are ecstatic for you!

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