M350: Old Saybrook Wildfowler Mallard Decoy Bookends

Pair of mallard bookends by Wildfowler Decoys of Old Saybrook, CT, circa early 1940s. Beautifully carved full-sized heads and breasts (7" high) of a mallard drake and hen mounted on weighted walnut bases with felt backs and bottoms, exhibiting finely-cut nail, mandible and face separations. The hen is in original condition with light paint flaking on the crown of the head and on the bill. The drake is likewise in original paint except that the grey-green area of the shoulder on the left side of the carving has been touched up. There is also light wear to the front edge of the drake's bill. SOLD

Price: $195.00

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M352: Miniature Scaup Drake Decoy, Oscar W. Peterson, Circa 1930

Outstanding 5.75" miniature scaup drake decoy in excellent original paint with very slight craquelure by Oscar W. "Pelee" Peterson of Cadillac, Michigan, circa 1930. A very folky carving with oversized glass eyes, it is is lightly textured and has a thin protective coating of varnish which I believe is original. There are several small paint chips, one on the left side of the neck and another in front of the right speculum. The paint at the tip of the bill is also chipped or worn. Peterson was born in 1887 to Swedish immigrant parents in Grayling, Michigan, before moving to the Cadillac area when he was 8. He spent much of his youth hunting and fishing and later opened a landscaping business with his brother, George. Although it is not exactly known when he started to carve, it is believed that he started around 1900 in order to supplement his income as a landscaper and general handyman. He sold his carvings from his home as well as in many bait shops around the area. Approaching carving as a business, Peterson was extremely prolific, creating more than 15,000 works of art including fish decoys, duck decoys, plaques and other decorative items. Estimates are that around 1,500 to 2,000 of his art form are still in existence. His works are the subject of the book "Michigan's Master Carver: Oscar W. Peterson, 1887-1951" by Ronald J. Fritz and can be found in the American Art Museum of the Smithsonian, the Brooklyn Museum and have also been seen numerous high profile exhibits. SOLD

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M351: Oscar Peterson Miniature Blue-Winged Teal Decoy, Circa 1930

Outstanding 6.5" miniature blue-winged teal hen decoy in near-mint original paint with very slight craquelure by Oscar W. "Pelee" Peterson of Cadillac, Michigan, circa 1930. A very folky carving with oversized glass eyes, it is is lightly textured and has a thin protective coating of varnish which I believe is original. The initials "TWO" are written on the bottom. Peterson was born in 1887 to Swedish immigrant parents in Grayling, Michigan, before moving to the Cadillac area when he was 8. He spent much of his youth hunting and fishing and later opened a landscaping business with his brother, George. Although it is not exactly known when he started to carve, it is believed that he started around 1900 in order to supplement his income as a landscaper and general handyman. He sold his carvings from his home as well as in many bait shops around the area. Approaching carving as a business, Peterson was extremely prolific, creating more than 15,000 works of art including fish decoys, duck decoys, plaques and other decorative items. Estimates are that around 1,500 to 2,000 of his art form are still in existence. His works are the subject of the book "Michigan's Master Carver: Oscar W. Peterson, 1887-1951" by Ronald J. Fritz and can be found in the American Art Museum of the Smithsonian, the Brooklyn Museum and have also been seen numerous high profile exhibits. SOLD

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D0843: Leo McIntoshWidgeon Drake Dated 1987

Fine carving of a widgeon drake by Leo H. McIntosh, Jr. (1953 - 2007), Stony Creek Decoys, Woodville, New York. Recognized as one of the best contemporary carvers before his untimely death, Leo apprenticed with Ken Harris for five years before founding Stony Creek Decoys. This widgeon is in near-mint vermiculated feather paint with only a small paint fleck off an underedge of the bill and a slight rub to the tip of the tail. Its head, with high quality glass eyes, is turned about 15 degrees to the left. The bird exhibits relief wing and shoulder carving with carved primaries, raised wing tips, a fluted tail, well-developed body musculature and a nicely detailed bill. The carving measures 14" in length and is 5" high at the head. The bottom of the decoy is signed and dated "Stony Creek Decoys by Leo H. McIntosh, Jr. '87". SOLD

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D0839: Ted Grace Wood Pigeon Decoy, Circa 1951

Excellent solid-bodied English wood pigeon decoy by Edward Arthur "Ted" Grace, Walderslade, Kent, United Kingdom, circa 1951. The bird, painted in fall plumage, is in well-blended and detailed original feather paint with a nice patina and and only minor wear. A very well-formed bird, it has screw eyes set in separate shoe eyelets to simulate eye rings, a cast metal bill and relief carved shoulders. Grace purchased Harry Boddy's decoy business in 1951, worked at it full time until 1957 and continued part time until 1977. He made only minor changes that can make the decoys by the two men difficult to distinguish between. This decoy has a longer neck and more narrow head than did those made by Boddy, but the head and neck are not as long and slender as seen in Grace's later decoys. His decoys were also painted with more finesse and a lighter palette than those by Boddy. The last photo shows a pigeon by Boddy on the left, a later decoy by Grace with the more slender and extended neck and head on the right and this decoy in the center. Grace's more fluid and blended brush work as compared to Boddy's can also be seen in this last photo. It measures 14.5" in length and 4" in width. Please see my article on the decoys of Harry Boddy and Ted Grace in the Jan/Feb 2107 issue of Hunting and Fishing Collectibles Magazine for additional information. Stand not included. SOLD

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M200: Ernie Meuhlmatt White-Breasted Nuthatch, Dated 1973

Original carving of a 4-1/2" long white-breasted nuthatch by Ernie Muehlmatt of Salisbury, Maryland, dated 1973. Exceptionally fine original paint with great musculature, wing and feather carving and ultra-realistic painted eyes with catch-light. The carving is in mint condition. There is a small hole drilled in the bottom of the bird, presumably to mount the carving in a stationary position during detailed carving and painting. It can only be seen from behind the assemblage. Designed to hang on a wall, the carving is inscribed in ink on the back, "Carved by E.F. Muehlmatt, nuthatch, 4/73". Muehlmatt (1927-2016), three-time Ward World Champion (1979, 1981, 1984), began carving in 1967 and was a master of life-size and miniature decorative wood sculpture, becoming one of the most talented, sought-after and popular carvers in wildfowl art. His work can be found in the Ward Museum of Wildfowl Art, Salisbury, Maryland, and the Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum, Wausau, Wisconsin. He is a Member of the Carvers' Hall of Fame and owned and operated Muehlmatt Studios in Salisbury. SOLD

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D0837: John Barnhart Ringneck Drake Decoy, Circa 1900

Rare ringneck drake by John Barnhart (1849-1924), Canton, Illinois, circa late 1800s to early 1900s. Little is known about Barnhart other than that he was affiliated with Barnhart Greenhouse in Canton, and that he was a skilled decoy carver, many of which were made prior to 1900. The bill is carved in Barnhart's easily recognized style. The bottom half of the body is carved with a "V" taper and a flat plane for the weight. This hollow-bodied decoy is in excellent structural condition with a tight body seam. As was characteristic of Barnhart's decoys, the head is made of two pieces of wood laminated together vertically and is likewise tight. This seam can be seen on the crown of the head and on the underside of the bill. The decoy appears to be in original paint with the exception of the black areas which may be in old working overpaint although a black light shows no anomalies in the paint. SOLD

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D0833: South Jersey Ruddy Turnstone, Circa Late 1800s

Early and rare full-bodied ruddy turnstone decoy in summer plumage, circa late 1800s, from a small hunting rig used in Absecon, New Jersey. The decoy is in original paint protected with remnants of a thin coat of shellac. It retains its original bill which is set in an unusual manner. The bill, which is flattened on the root end like the tip of a flat-head screwdriver, is inserted knife-like into an incision in the face of the decoy. It does extend completely through the head, however. The decoy measures 9.5" from tip of bill to end of tail with a body approximately 3" in diameter. Ruddy turnstones are among the rarest of shorebird decoys. Stand included. SOLD

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