Hollow Canada Goose Charles Birch (1867-1956) Willis Wharf, VA, c. 1920 24 in. long
Raised on Chincoteague, Birch moved south to Willis Wharf at age thirty-nine. He was a boatbuilder, waterman, and decoy carver. His decoys were very well regarded in their own time and his rigs were hunted over from North Carolina’s Gooseville Gun Club to Illinois’ Georgia Pacific Paper Gun Club (also referred to as the Island 29 Club). This decoy is from the latter of those clubs.
This eloquent goose decoy, in rarely found original Birch paint, features a graceful head set upon a raised neck seat. As with all of his swans and geese, the head is fitted with an oak bill. Birch’s hollow birds with proud breasts and sweeping arched necks have long captured the attention of folk art and decoy collectors. Original paint with gunning wear.
Provenance: Georgia Pacific Paper Gun Club Rig Private Collection Van Tright Collection, acquired from the above Private Collection, Maryland
Literature: Paul W. Parmalee and Forrest D. Loomis, "Decoys and Decoy Carvers of Illinois," DeKalb, IL, 1969, pp. 167-8, pl. 126, rigmate illustrated (incorrectly captioned).
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