Wednesday, January 13, 2016


At the close of the eighteenth century, the newly born United States of America was a place of unbridled opportunity and optimism.  Americans were beginning to grasp the potential of their Democracy, both as a beacon of freedom and a rising economic power.  Symbols of the new nation were all the rage from the flag forged in the fires of the revolution to the Great Seal of The United States, first used officially in 1782 .  The new nation was quickly epitomized by the symbol of the Bald Eagle.

Over the last two centuries the American Eagle has been portrayed in countless stylistic interpretations.  It is truly ubiquitous, appearing on everything from U.S. currency to Harley Davidson motorcycles. My very favorite interpretation of this patriotic symbol is the classic early 19th C. Federal eagle.  These examples often have gracefully curved spread wings and an open beak.  The quality of carving is often masterful, with paint
decoration and of course gilding. 

Carved eagles are truly works of art.  Skilled carvers could transform a block of pine or hardwood into a detailed three dimensional emblem of their nation.  Surfaces with thick quality gilding shine two centuries later as if they were solid gold.  We have two 19th C. eagles for sale in our January 16th auction.  I am asking for our bidders to do their patriotic duty and bid early and often on these wonderful works of art!