An exceedingly rare pair of cross-hatched hooded merganser decoys, 12" in length, commonly attributed to Sam Hutchings, of Jones Falls, ON, c. 1920, but quite possibly even older, and made by his father-in-law, Freeman Jackson, c. 1900. There are only about 6 pairs of these cross-hatched hooded mergansers known, and perhaps another two dozen cross-hatched golden eye decoys. The last pair of mergansers to be sold were part of the Ralph Price estate sale (total: CAN$135,000, incl. buyer's premium, before sales tax). Other single drakes have been bringing US$50,000+, at auction. There has not been a hen merganser available for many years, although one will come to auction in April 2017, as part of the Guyette & Deeter sale of the Peter Brown collection. This pair came from the Smith rig, near Chaffey's Locks, and belonged to that family for 80+ years until acquired by me. They are in their original surface, and structurally sound. Each has had a bill repair and removal of some acrylic over paint to return them to their authentic, original state. Absolutely guaranteed to be right, money back if not satisfied. Contact me for further info and/or price details.
Note: There are slight distinguishing features between the various 3-dozen or so cross-hatched 'Hutchings' decoys which have been found to date. It is believed they were made over a period of years. Some have cross-hatching all over (notably those shown in books by Gene Kangas), while others, such as this pair, have cross-hatching only in the black areas, the white areas remaining smooth (except for the underside of the tail, which is fluted). A third version of a very few 'Hutchings' goldeneye decoys is known to have been made with no cross-hatching whatsoever (i.e., smooth bodied); possibly they were never completely finished. I'm biased, of course, but I do believe those with the smooth white parts and cross-hatched black areas are slightly more appealing, possibly older, and likely took longer to make - needing more care, attention and time to keep the cross-hatched areas separate from the smooth. You be the judge. They're lovely and extremely scarce either way!!!
Open to serious offers.