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 Jack Reeves  (1904 - 1986)

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Lived/Active: Ontario / Canada      Known for: hollow duck decoy carving

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Ad Code: 3
AskART Artist
from Auction House Records.
mportant hollow carved Canada goose
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Jack Reeves (1904 – 1986) [1]

Attached below is courtesy of The Ward Museum of Wildfowl Art:
Reeves Family – Long Point, Ontario

Three generations of the Reeves family were employed as guides and decoy carvers for the Long Point Company (1866 – 1960) a private duck hunting club on the North shore of Lake Erie. The acreage is now a Provincial park.

Phineas (1833 – 1896), a native of Bristol, England and the progenitor of the family was the first manager and guide for the club. He is well known for his classic hollow Canada geese decoys. Two of his sons, John (1860 – 1896) and Charles (1877 – 1941) carried on their father's work making decoys and acting as guides for club members. Jack (1904 – 1986), a son of Charles is probably the most prolific of the Reeves carvers. [2]

Most Reeves decoys are well carved, hollow bodied and artfully painted. The similarity in form and style among the Reeves carvers can make it difficult to determine which one made a particular decoy. Decoys made by Charles and another Reeves family member, Frank (1870 – 1938) were often covered in canvas in deference to club members who preferred that the birds not "shine" when wet. Decoys made by the Reeves remained with the club and accurate club records and stampings help to identify Reeves carved birds.
Source for above: The Ward Museum of Wildfowl Art, Salisbury, MD.
[1] Please note: The Great Book of Wildfowl Decoys” shows Jack’s life-dates as 1900 – 1986. 

[2] According to Traditions in Wood: A History of Wildfowl Decoys in Canada: Phineas (1833 – 1892) had four sons – Henry (life dates not stated), John (1861 – 1896), Francis (1870 – 1938) and Charles (1872 – 1941). John, Francis and Charles were carvers. All four sons worked, at one time or another, for the Long Point Company. Charles’ son, Jack (b. 1904), began carving decoys when he was sixteen and worked for the Long Point Company for 40 years. He regularly guided Colonel R.S. McLaughlin the President of General Motors, Canada and in 1973 guided Governor General Roland Michener. Jack also carved commemorative plaques for the club. Source: Traditions in Wood: A History of Wildfowl Decoys in Canada (see book references).

Additional sources:

Collecting Antique Bird Decoys and Duck Calls: An Identification and Price Guide (2003), by Carl Luckey and Russell E. Lewis (see AskART book references)

The Great Book of Wildfowl Decoys (2000), edited by Joe Engers (see AskART book references)

Decoying: St Clair to the St Lawrence (1988), by Bernard W. Crandall (see AskART book references)

Traditions in Wood: A History of Wildfowl Decoys in Canada (1987), edited by Patricia Fleming (see AskART book references)

Ontario Decoys II: Some Carvers and Regional Styles (1986), by Bernie Gates (see AskART book references)

Waterfowl Decoys of Michigan and the Lake St. Clair Region (1983); edited by Clune Walsh and Lowell G. Jackson, photography by Bill Johnson (see AskART book references)

The Bird Decoy: An American Art Form (1976), by Paul A. Johnsgard (see AskART book references)

* For more in-depth information about these terms and others, see Glossary

Submitted by M.D. Silverbrooke.

** If you discover credit omissions or have additional information to add, please let us know at
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