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Discussion in 'Bird Taxidermy' started by jgrit8, Mar 5, 2018.
Friends just sent me this pic from an antique store.Not sure if these really are heath hens.
There is certainly a possibility of these specimens are Heath Hens. This bubble glass style of taxidermy originated in the early 1880's in the US with a number of taxidermists producing the including Frederic Webster ca. 1885-1885 when he was in Washington D. C. before moving to New York. Around 1889 this style of convex glass, or bubble glass, was patented by Chas. K. Reed and items sold throughout the US through the taxidermy/naturalists catalog that they published. Hundreds of bubble glass were sold during the heyday of natural history when prices could be put on bird skins of all species, including rare ones.
This commercialization probably spawned much of the opposition and led to bird clubs including the Audubon society. Osprey, a journal for bird lovers issue in 1897, still had skins for sale. For example if you click the below link and click on “page” you will see just below Reed advertisements were offers of Bachman’s Warbler for $1.50 and Heath Hens for $6.00 – both species now extinct.
Chas K Reed and His son Chester A. sold taxidermy books besides selling mounts, skins and egg and taxidermist/naturalist supplies
Reed, Charles K. 1900. Guide to Taxidermy with Full Instructions How to Prepare and Mount Birds, Animals and Fish. Also a Complete List of all North American Birds, with Prices of their Eggs, Skins and Mounted Specimens, also an Exhaustive Line of Ornithologists', Oologists' and Taxidermists' Supplies; Valuable Information for the Amateur, Recipes, etc. Charles K. Reed, Taxidermist, Worcester, Massachusetts. 93 pp. (Paperback)
Reed, Charles K. 1904. Guide to Taxidermy with Full Instructions How to Prepare and Mount Birds, Animals and Fish. Also a Complete List of all North American Birds, with Prices of their Eggs, Skins and Mounted Specimens, also an Exhaustive Line of Ornithologists', Oologists' and Taxidermists' Supplies; Valuable Information for the Amateur, Recipes, etc. Charles K. Reed, Taxidermist, Worcester, Massachusetts. 87 pp. (Hardback)
Reed, Chas. K., and Chester A. Reed. 1908. Guide to Taxidermy. New edition. Chas. K. Reed, Worcester, Massachusetts. 307 pp. + 9 pp. Advertisements.
Reed, Chas. K. ca. 1895. Chas K Reed, Taxidermist and Dealer in Naturalists’ Supplies, Books, Instruments, Bird Eggs, Minerals, Shells, Curiosities and Mounted Specimens. Worcester, Massachusetts. 34 pp.
Reed, Chas. K. ca. 1900. Chas K Reed and Co., Naturalists’ Supplies. Worcester Massachusetts. 66 pp.
Chester edited the early bird magazine American Ornithology and marketed numerous books and even a small field guides before Roger Tory Peterson. Here is a link to a description of the heath hen in American Ornithology from 1901. (click page and scroll down on this link)
You can read a lot about the Reed Family on this website
Thank you for all the info.The seller said this used to hang in a Chicago art gallery and is dated from the 1880's.
regardless would not be legal to buy or sell with the ducks in there somebody should tell the antique store