Wood Pigeon Decoy Article: English Wood Pigeon Decoys 101, A Primer

Viewable here at no charge. An introductory article I have written on English wood pigeon decoys, published in the March-April 2015 issue of Hunting and Fishing Collectibles Magazine. If you would like to subscribe to or purchase a copy of the magazine itself, please contact Stan Van Etten, Publisher, at HFCollectibles.com. The article is posted as written; however further research has resulted in some changes in the identification of several carvers. Two later articles on wood pigeon decoys are also posted on my (this) website, each containing current identifications and information.

Price: $0.01

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D0904: Rare Chief Cuffee Ringneck Plover Decoy, Circa 1915

A very rare example of a semipalmated or ringneck plover by Eugene "Chief" Cuffee (1866-1941), Easthampton, Long Island, New York, Circa 1915. The decoy, which is a seldom-found species by any maker, measures 8.5” in length. It is in intricate original feather paint with carved eyes and extended wingtips and retains its original bill. Cuffee was a Native American from the Shinnecock Reservation outside Easthampton. Recent research (See Decoy Magazine, Nov/Dec 2003) regarding these decoys suggests that William Henry Bennett (1867-1954), also of Easthampton, was the carver of the decoys rather than Cuffee. I don't have a dog in this fight! Stand included.

Price: $1995.00

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M366: Bobwhite Quail Pair, Joe Ahearn, Circa 1940s

Fine pair of bobwhite quail (male and female) by James Joseph "Joe” Ahearn (1904-1963), Stamford, CT, circa 1940s. An excellent effort, these roughly half-scale carving measure 7.25" in length (tip of bill to tip of tail) and 7” in height including the birch branches they are perched on. The carvings are in excellent original condition with highly detailed feather paint, glass eyes and wire legs with lead feet. They are each in excellent structural condition. Each is signed on the beveled end of oneof the birch branches. 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. When Joe lived in the New York City area where he was a salesman for the National Cash Register Company, he was known to have carved miniatures while on the road. At the onset of World War II, he and his wife moved to Stamford, Connecticut. 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. SOLD

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Wood Pigeon Decoy Article: Yorkshire School of English Wood pigeon Decoys

Viewable here at no charge. An article I have written on the wood pigeon decoys of various carvers of the Yorkshire school, Yorkshire, United Kingdom. published in the November - December 2019 issue of Hunting and Fishing Collectibles Magazine. If you would like to subscribe to or purchase a copy of the magazine itself, please contact Stan Van Etten, Publisher, at HFCollectibles.com.

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Wood Pigeon Decoy Article: The British Are Coming!

Viewable here at no charge. An article I have written on the wood pigeon decoys of Harry Boddy and Ted Grace, published in the January - February 2017 issue of Hunting and Fishing Collectibles Magazine. If you would like to subscribe to or purchase a copy of the magazine itself, please contact Stan Van Etten, Publisher, at HFCollectibles.com.

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D0897/D0898: Don Gearhart Green-Winged Teal Pair, Circa 1931-1932

Excellent glass-eyed green-winged teal pair by Donald R. Gearhart (1900 - 1987), Tulsa, Oklahoma, circa 1931-1932. The drake is in lightly worn, well-executed original feather paint exhibiting a pleasing patina. It has deeply carved wings with raised wingtips, a slender neck and high head turned slightly to the left. Its "face mask" is incised as are the specula and tail feathers. There is a crack through the neck that was reglued many years ago and remains stable as well as some "puppy chew" to the tip of the bill. The hen is in excellent structural condition with lightly worn, well-executed patinated original feather paint. It, too, has deeply carved wings with incised specula and tail feathers. These carvings, known for their small size as "pocket teal", measure 10 1/2" in length, 5 1/4" height and 4 1/4" in width. The keel is missing on both. They are inscribed on the bottom in Gearhart's hand, "J. H. Abbott, McPherson, Kansas". Abbott was apparently a friend, business associate or hunting companion for whom Gearhart made the decoy. Gearhart was a senior executive with the Sinclair Oil Company. His decoys were slightly undersized, designed for use in the marshes of Louisiana. Please see Decoy Magazine, Jul/Aug 2013, for an excellent article by Gene Kangas on Gearhart and his work.

Price: $995.00

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D0899: Ted Grace Content Green-Winged Teal Decoy

Excellent solid-bodied green-winged teal drake carved in the low-head "content" position by Edward Arthur "Ted" Grace (1914-1985), Walderslade, Kent, United Kingdom, circa mid-1950s. This glass-eyed teal is in nicely blended and stippled feather paint with only minor wear. It measures 11" in length, 5" in width and 3-1/2" in height. Grace was mentored by his neighbor, Henry Ernest "Harry" Boddy. After a short apprenticeship, Grace purchased the decoy business in 1951, continuing to make wood pigeon and waterfowl decoys full time until 1957 and part time until 1977. Between the two men, they might well have been England's most prolific carvers.

Price: $425.00

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M365: Fine Swimming Blue-Winged Teal, Leo McIntosh, Dated 1984

Outstanding carving of a blue-winged teal drake by Leo H. McIntosh, Jr. (1953 - 2007), Stony Creek Decoys, Woodville, New York, circa 1984. This carving was named "Best in Show" in the 1984 U. S. National Decoy Show. McIntosh also won 1st place for blue-winged teal in the 1984 Ward Museum World Championships, Division A1 (Professional), Decorative Decoy, Marsh Ducks, possibly for this same entry. 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 glass-eyed teal is feather-textured over its entirety and is in near-mint, highly detailed feather paint with only some slight rubbing on the edges of the bill and a 1/4" professional repair to the tip of the primary feather on the right wing. The carving is in a very realistic swimming or feeding posture with the head slightly uplifted and turned a little to the left. The bird exhibits relief wing and shoulder carving with raised wing tips, a fluted tail with carved feathers, well-developed body musculature and a well detailed bill. The carving measures 12-1/2" in length, 4-1/4" in width and 3-3/4" in height at the top of the raised wing tips. It is signed, dated and remarqued by Leo on the bottom. The commemorative plate pictured will be included with the carving. SOLD

Price: $1495.00

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