Published: July 29, 2003
– Prices continued to escalate in the decoy market with the most recent spat of premium priced examples being witnessed at Guyette and Schmidt’s two-day auction this past week, July 24-25, at The Cliff House. “Prices in general were high,” commented Gary Guyette after the auction, and prices for the large selection of Crowell miniatures sold were “higher than high.”
The 821-lot sale tallied a cool $1.54 million coming in some 30 percent higher than the high presale estimates, according to the auction house. The top price paid for an individual decoy came during the second session of the auction as an extremely rare Lathrop Holmes old squaw decoy attracted a great deal of attention from numerous Massachusetts collectors. The unusual decoy featured canvas over wood frame construction with a carved wooden head and the bird retained its nice original paint. The decoy was cataloged as having a bill repair. Bidding on the lot was brisk with it selling at $49,500.
The highest price achieved at the sale came as a set of 52 carved balsa and painted miniatures decoys by the Ward Brothers realized $71,500. Nantucket shorebirds also commanded serious prices with a golden plover by an unknown maker selling at $28,600, while a hollow carved golden plover realized $26,400.
A complete review will appear in a future issue.
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