D0548: Gus Wilson Rocking Head White-winged Scoter Decoy

Extremely rare white-winged scoter hen with rocking head by Augustus A. "Gus" Wilson (1864-1950) of South Portland, Maine, circa 1st quarter of the 20th century. Wilson, acclaimed as one of the finest decoy carvers ever, produced nearly all of his scoters as drakes. This is one of the few hens known. The decoy is excellent original paint showing minor to moderate wear. There is some deterioration to the edge of the tail and to an area on the underside and a couple of hairline cracks, otherwise it is excellent structurally. Wilson's innovative "rocking head" design used a slotted neck seat construction to allow the head to rock back and forth with the motion of the water. Carved eyes and wings with beautifully detailed head and bill, including the underside.

Price: $7950.00

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D0725: Harry Pember Black Duck Decoy With Mussel in Bill

Outstanding black duck decoy with a mussel clasped in its bill by Harry Pember of Milford, Connecticut, circa early 3rd quarter of the 20th century. Harry hunted with old friends, including Tom Marshall, the Disbrow brothers and Keith Mueller, using decoys he carved for his own use, including this fine working bird. Made from 3 layers of dense cork with an inset wooden tail, the decoy remains in near-mint condition. In addition to the mussel, it has very detailed bill and mouth carving, glass eyes and scratch-feather paint on the head, which is turned about 20 degrees to the right. The bird measures roughly 17" in length, 9" in height, including the keel, and is 8" wide.

Price: $595.00

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D0737: Keith Mueller White-Winged Scoter Drake Decoy

Fine solid-bodied white-winged scoter drake decoy by Keith Mueller of Killingworth, CT, circa 1980s. This is a big bird, measuring 20" in overall length, 9" in width and standing 7" tall at the head, not including the keel. The decoy is in excellent original paint and is branded "Mueller"on the keel. There are several very tight hairline cracks in the decoy with the most noticeable one running from the left breast up into the back. It's easy to see why Keith is considered to be among a small handful of the top contemporary decoy carvers. He has been awarded the title of World Chqmpion Carver twice and is the only carver to win all three hunting decoy divisions at the prestigious Ward World Championships. Keith has won over 250 "Best of Show" awards world-wide and has works displayed in numerous museums, including at the internationally acclaimed Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum "Birds in Art" exhibit. SOLD

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M280: Russ Burr Miniature Bobwhite Quail, Circa 1940

Three miniature Bobwhite quail on driftwood by Russ Burr (1887 - 1955), Hingham, Massachusetts, circa 1940. Burr began carving in 1937 and continued into the early 1950s. This is an early carving, accomplished before he began stamping his work. Each quail measures approximately 2" in length. The driftwood base is about 7" long. From the bottom of the base to the top of the head of the highest quail measures roughly 3 1/2". Each quail is in original detailed feather paint with wire legs and painted eyes. See Birds in Wood and Paint by Joe Ellis, pages 92-98.

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M053: Deltacraft Decoy Pattern, Milwaukee School/Warren Dettman

Deltacraft Plan, No.4642, Duck Decoys, shows a plan to make a hollow-bodied decoy of laminated construction. Deltacraft was part of Delta Manufacturing Co., Milwaukee. The plan shows that it was drawn by "E.H." and designed by Ed Hamilton. The plan was mailed in a Delta Mfg. envelope and stamped, "Aug 17, 1945". The decoy pictured is easily recognizable as one of a form attributed by most decoy auction houses to Warren Dettman of Milwaukee, circa 1935. The fold-out plan measures 38" in width and 24" in height. See D0212 and D0720 in the Waterfowl Decoys section of this website for a mallard drake and hen attributed to Dettman. This plan is pictured on page 137 of "Collecting Antique Bird Decoys and Duck Calls" by Luckey and Lewis. Price includes US shipping. SOLD

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D0212: Warren Dettman Mallard Drake Decoy

Hollow-carved mallard drake decoy with raised split wingtips, detailed bill carving, an applied bottom board, glass eyes and near-mint original paint. It measures 16" in length, 7" in width and is almost 8" high at the head. The decoy is attributed to Warren Dettman of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, circa 1935, by most auction catalogs, but that attribution is questioned by some. "Whistling Wings, Whittled Ducks and Wetlands", a publication of the Milwaukee Public Museum (MPM), states, "Judging from an apparently early pair of mallards still in the family, Dettman first tried making bodies by hollowing a large block of wood from underneath, then covering the opening with a board. Perhaps dissatisfied with the technique, or unable to get large blocks of wood, Dettman turned to producing bodies from laminated pine boards, cutting out the centers of the middle ones before gluing all together", as detailed in the publication referenced above. This decoy is constructed in the earlier style. It is definitely from the Milwaukee Public Museum (MPM) "school". Dettman was a taxidermist at MPM and taught others, particularly WPA workers hired by the museum, to carve decoys. There is a possibility that these decoys were carved by one of those students. Deltacraft Plan No. 4642, Duck Decoys, shows a plan to make this decoy, including a photo of a near identical example on its cover. Deltacraft was part of Delta Manufacturing Co., Milwaukee. The plan shows that it was drawn by "E.H." and designed by Ed Hamilton. No Milwaukee collector I've spoken to seems to know the name. Whoever developed the design in that plan, not a later carver using the plan, made this decoy. See Items M053 and D0720 in the “Sold" section of this website for a Deltacraft pattern that was developed from these decoys as well as mallard hen by the same carver. This drake and the Deltacraft plan are pictured on page 137 of "Collecting Antique Bird Decoys and Duck Calls" by Luckey and Lewis.

Price: $3250.00

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D0720: Warren Dettman Mallard Hen Decoy

Solid-bodied mallard hen decoy with carved raised wings, glass eyes and strong original detailed scratch-feather paint, circa 1930s. It measures 16.5" in length, 7" in width and is almost 8" high at the head. The decoy is attributed to Warren Dettman of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, circa 1935, by most of the decoy auction houses, but that attribution is questioned by some. The decoy is definitely from the Milwaukee Public Museum (MPM) "school". Dettman was a taxidermist at MPM and taught others, particularly WPA workers hired by the museum, to carve decoys. There is a possibility that these decoys were carved by one of those students. See D0212 in this section for a hollow mallard drake attributed to Dettman. The two decoys are definitely by the same hand but are stylistically different. SOLD

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D0621: Upstate New York Redhead Drake Decoy

Excellent solid-bodied, glass-eyed redhead drake decoy by an unknown carver from Niagara Falls, New York, circa 1st quarter, 20th century. One of a small rig of redheads and scaup found around 1990, it has a well-rounded body with upturned tail and unique head and bill carving. The decoy is in bold original paint with a highly stylized wingtip paint pattern. This bird is one of the few that survived in original paint. I have seen several others from that rig that had the initials "EK" carved into the bottoms. It measures approximately 13.5" in length, 6.5" in width and 6.5" high at the top of the head. Great example of American folk art! See the Adrian Morris Antiques website for a scaup by this same carver priced at $2450.00! SOLD

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