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VTA History

 

 

On Sunday, September 4, 1966 twenty-three concerned trappers met in Hungry Mother State Park in Smyth County, VA to discuss the trapper’s future in Virginia. In view of unknowledgeable, emotional people trying to get legislation passed to outlaw trapping in Virginia, these trappers knew something had to be done to combat the lies that were being told and the antics of these groups to get attention and donations.

The facts are that a large percentage of the propaganda being advertised by these anti-trapping groups have been proven to be outright lies. The National Wildlife Federation, who make their policies on scientific fact alone, state that trapping furbearers is a legitimate use of a renewable resource. These trappers knew, as well:

• The need to conserve and maintain an adequate supply of furbearing animals;

• To preserve the freedom and pleasures of the trapline for those who succeed them;

• To uphold the fundamental rights of freedom, liberty and justice for all;

• To develop leadership for the advancement of the best interests of trapping and the fur industry as a whole;

• To insure a desire to practice the ethics of true sportsmanship towards others who wish to enjoy the recreation and pleasures of the outdoors;

• To impart knowledge to the young concerning the necessity of conservation;

• To cultivate a feeling of goodwill and mutual understanding through a proper respect of the rights of landowners at all times;

• To aid and cooperate with law enforcement agencies in bringing about the apprehension and just punishment of those who violate the laws as they relate to the interests of trappers;

• To oppose and request revisions of any proposed legislation which discriminates toward the hunting and trapping fraternity; and,

• To oppose any legislation which would impose unreasonable restriction on the taking of furbearing animals or the sale of furs.

Therefore, the Virginia Trappers Association came into being, and an election was held on the spot. Mr. Johnny Hundley, of Bassett, VA, was elected the first President, Mr. E. C. Morgan, of Abington, was elected Vice President, and Mr. William “Bill” Kindervater of Richmond was elected Secretary-Treasurer.

Since this was first written in 1978, we had over 3,000 licensed trappers and many thousands of hunters who do not realize the Virginia Trappers Association is the Virginia sportsperson’s first line of defense. If we fail, then our brother hunters will be next.

Think it over. If you want to do something about it, become a member of the Virginia Trappers Association and National Trappers Association and stand on the front line with us. From our beginnings with 23 concerned trappers, we must continue to remain strong and alert to safeguard our heritage.