Home |  Program Calendar |  Contact Us |   Search    go

Login |  Cart

Stay Connected

Subscribe for updates about the museum's programs and offerings.
Share |

Planning a Visit?

909 South Schumaker Drive
Salisbury, MD 21804

Museum Hours

Mon - Sat: 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Sun: 12 p.m. - 5 p.m.

Jasper N. Dodge Decoy Company- Detroit, MI  

Jasper Dodge started a small commercial carving business in his home in 1883 and expanded the next year when he bought out George Peterson (Delph, Factory 135, Engers 219). The company produced black duck, scaup, bufflehead, canvasback, mallard, merganser, pintail, redhead, teal, wigeon, brant, coot, goose, plover, snipe and swan decoys on a regular basis. Advertisements boasted that a hunter could bring in any species for a model, and Dodge carvers could replicate it.

Unless a customer specified otherwise, a decoy from the Dodge Company was solid white cedar. The decoys were turned on lathes and had wide shoulders, thick upturned tails and round chests and bottoms. Putty was often used to join the hand¬ finished heads to the body and provide a smooth surface. On rare birds, the thick bill has separated mandibles carved in, but most have no detail. Eyes were glass, tack or painted and seem to represent differences ln a decoy's grade. Painting styles vary quite a bit; areas of bold color are embellished with dots, scallops and other brushstrokes to represent plumage. The highest priced and most popular style was referred to as "Model No.1" and sold for nine dollars a dozen (Haid 61). Cheaper decoys went for seven or five dollars a dozen (Haid 61). There are no definite records, but in 1894 perhaps, decoy manufacturing ceased altogether (Engers 220).