M311: Unknown Cock Pheasant from Massachusetts

Unknown cock pheasant found in Massachusetts, circa 2nd quarter, 20th century. Very nice carving in original condition with painted eyes, carved crests, molded thighs and wire legs. The rich polychrome paint is beautifully done with intricate feather detail and displays a very nice patina. I find the vivid colors of this carving to be especially appealing. A light crazing serves only to enhance its overall appearance. As seen in the last two photos, there is very light "puppy chew" to the tip of the tail. The carving measures just over 10" in length from the tip of the bill to the tip of the tail and stands roughly 7" high including the base which is covered on the bottom with a heavyweight construction paper. SOLD

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M291: Delaware River Standing Pintail Drake

Standing pintail drake by William "Bid" Furness (1909-1965), an upper Delaware River carver from National Park, New Jersey, circa 1950s. Roughly 2/3-scale carving with a 2-piece laminated body, glass eyes, inset tail sprig, incised bill and nostrils and raised wingtips. The bold feather paint displays a nice patina with light crazing and is original except for touch up where the two legs join the body (professional repair by Steve Weaver). As seen in the photos, there are slight separations of the neck joint and the body seam on the left side of the car4ving. The carving measures about 16" in length from the tip of the sprig to the tip of the bill and stands 9-1/2" tall at the head. It closely resembles the work of John McLoughlin of Bordentown, NJ, a contemporary of Furness. The underside of one foot is signed "Furness Decoys", the other, "Furness". "339 (334?) Noyes" is written in ink on the bottom of the duck and "Noyes" is scratched into the black paint under the tail. Fred Noyes, founder of the Noyes Museum in Brigantine, NJ, is known to have purchased decoys from "Bid" for display in his restaurant around 1959. This carving was acquired by John Delph when it was deaccessioned from the Noyes Museum. See Decoy Magazine, Jan/Feb 1991, pgs. 24-27, for an article on Furness by Charles Seidel. SOLD

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D0756: Joe Lincoln Black-Bellied Plover Shorebird Decoy

Excellent full-bodied split-tailed black-bellied plover with tack eyes with painted pupils and irises, circa 1st quarter, 20th century. The decoy is from the rig of Henry Oakes of Gloucester, Massachusetts, and skillfully painted by him, although it may be an early decoy by Joe Lincoln of Accord. It measures 10-1/2" from the tip of bill to the tip of the tail. A dowel was inserted through the crown of the head and into the body to strengthen the neck. It did its job as there was a tight crack in the neck which has been repaired with touch up to that area. There was also a rough area on top of the tip of the original bill which has been repaired and touched up. Stand not included. SOLD

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D0755: Massachusetts Greater Yellowlegs or Willet Shorebird Decoy

Very well done greater yellowlegs or willet decoy with excellent form attributed to Henry Oakes (1900-1973), Gloucester, Massachusetts, circa 1st quarter, 20th century. It is in the somewhat extended or standing pose of what were called "grass birds". The full-bodied decoy is carved with a split tail and measures just over 15" in length, measured from the tip of the bill to the end of the tail. It has tack eyes with painted pupils and irises and retains its original bill. The paint is also original but has flaked, particularly on the back and upper sides. SOLD

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M312: James Ahearn Miniature Bufflehead Drake

Miniature bufflehead drake by James Joseph "Joe" Ahearn (1904-1963) of Stamford, CT, circa 1950. The carving, mounted on a driftwood or cedar root base, is in excellent original condition with incised wings, wire legs and webbed metal feet. Ahearn skillfully captured the irridesence of the bird's plumage with his highly detailed feather paint. The bufflehead is 2-7/8" in length from bill to tail and stands 2-1/2" tall, including the base. It is signed "J. J. Ahearn, Bufflehead M(ale)" on the base. Ahearn became well-known in the mid-1940's as a carver of miniatures. It is unclear when he began carving them although it is presumed that he started in the late 1930's, if not sooner. The first documentation of his carvings being offered for sale is in the 1945-46 catalog of the Sporting Gallery and Bookstore in New York City. This catalog featured a wide selection of Ahearn's "functional hunter" and "sportsman oriented" items such as lamps, wall thermometers, letter openers, coat racks, tie racks, pipe racks, book ends and ashtrays in a variety of configurations. It was around this time that he also began offering his miniature carvings of waterfowl and upland game birds. One of the first and certainly the most important retailer to carry his carvings was the Crossroads of Sport store in New York City. They were enjoying a huge demand for the A. J. King's miniatures and were more than eager to complement his products with another carver's work. Ahearn is featured in "Birds in Wood and Paint" by Joe Ellis. SOLD

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M313: James Ahearn Miniature Barrow's Goldeneye Drake

Miniature Barrow's goldeneye drake by James Joseph "Joe" Ahearn (1904-1963) of Stamford, CT, circa 1950. The carving is mounted on a wood base and is in excellent original condition with highly detailed feather paint, incised wings and primaries, wire legs and webbed metal feet. The goldeneye is 3" in length from bill to tail and stands 2-5/8" tall, including the base. It is signed "J. Ahearn, Barrow's Goldeneye" on the base. Ahearn became well-known in the mid-1940's as a carver of miniatures. It is unclear when he began carving them although it is presumed that he started in the late 1930's, if not sooner. The first documentation of his carvings being offered for sale is in the 1945-46 catalog of the Sporting Gallery and Bookstore in New York City. This catalog featured a wide selection of Ahearn's "functional hunter" and "sportsman oriented" items such as lamps, wall thermometers, letter openers, coat racks, tie racks, pipe racks, book ends and ashtrays in a variety of configurations. It was around this time that he also began offering his miniature carvings of waterfowl and upland game birds. One of the first and certainly the most important retailer to carry his carvings was the Crossroads of Sport store in New York City. They were enjoying a huge demand for A. J. King's miniatures and were more than eager to complement his products with another carver's work. Ahearn is featured in "Birds in Wood and Paint" by Joe Ellis.

Price: $350.00

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M305: Elmer Crowell Miniature Mallard Drake Decoy

Miniature mallard drake in excellent blended original paint by Elmer Crowell, East Harwich, Massachusetts, mounted on a desk box. While the miniature is set in such a manner that the base of the carving cannot be seen, the bifurcated eye style marks this carving as having come from the era in which Crowell's rectangular stamp was used, circa 1930s. The carved duck measures 4-1/2" in length, 1-3/4" in width and stands approximately 1-1/8" high at the head, not including the box. The box itself is made from maple with a lacquered finish and is roughly 7" wide, 5" from front to back and 2-1/2" high. The lid of the box is slightly sprung and has a small crack at one of the the hinges in back. SOLD

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M309: Vreeland Miniature Mourning Doves

Outstanding pair of diminutive hand-carved miniature mourning doves by Harry and Norma Vreeland of Greenlawn, Long Island, New York, circa 1965. Each dove, with raised wingtips, fluted tail and glass eyes, is mounted on the perch with wire legs and feet and measures only 2 1/2" in length. Overall, the piece is 3 1/2" wide and 3 1/2" in height. The birds exhibit minutely detailed and exceptional feather paint in mint original condition. The carving is signed "VREELAND" on the back of the base. Working as a team, Harry carved and Norma usually painted, although Harry was also a very accomplished painter. His painting is almost indistinguishable from Norma's. Much of their work, which was featured in the Winter 1974 issue of North American Decoys Magazine, was sold through The Crossroads of Sport in New York City.

Price: $675.00

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