Never Lose a Fish
To put it in a few words, if you never let the fish get an inch of slack line and can hold him away from the snags, you will never lose a fish that is decently hooked. Usually the rod should be held pointing upward at an angle of about forty-five degrees or more and the spring of the rod, if the slack is kept out of the line by means of the reel, will tire the fish in time. When he rushes away you must let him take out line or something will give way, but the drag of the reel or your thumb pressure on the spool must check his rush and bring him to a standstill. When he comes closer you must reel in the line and handle the rod in such a way that he cannot get a pull on the slack or a chance to shake the hook from his month. If he runs towards weeds or snags you must check and stop him by pressure on the spool of the reel. If the snags are close by it may be necessary to raise the rod in such a way that the fish has to pull against all of its spring, but this should only be done when you are using a strong rod, or you may break the tip.
Brooks, Lake. The Science of Fishing. Columbus, OH: A.R. Harding, 1912. Print.
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