Callie O'Neal (dates unknown) Currituck County, North Carolina
In the Northwest part of North Carolina is Currituck County, "Land of the wild goose". Bordered on the East by the Atlantic Ocean and on the West by the North River, it is known as" a waterfowlers' paradise with its open water, marshes and ponds". Halfway "down county" near Churches Island is a series of villages that were home to some of the very best North Carolina working decoy carvers.
The O'Neals' are a family with deep roots in the region. Brothers Louis (? • 1981) and Pat (dates unknown) were makers of "slat board" geese decoys covered with canvas and builders of sturdy hunting boats. A cousin, Callie O'Neal (dates unknown), a well known regional carver was active through the early 1950's. His decoys are distinguished by their flat bottoms and neatly carved heads. He is credited with canvasback, redhead, blackhead, Canada geese (and at least one ruddy duck) decoys.
For additional information see:
Decoy Magazine, Jan./Feb. 1989.
Decoy Magazine, July/Aug. 1988.
Southern Decoys of Virginia and the Carolinas, 1983 by Henry A. Fleckenstein.
Waterfowl Heritage: North Carolina Decoys and Gunning Lore, 1982 by William Neal Conoley, Jr.