I am always excited when I can present to all of you another rare or unusual figure. This one fills both criteria. It is a rare figure carved in Brooklyn New Your by Louis Grannat. Most antique dealers today would only say this is a very rare folk art ventriloquist figure and that would actually be correct but in actuality Louis Grannat made figures and sold them to the public from his shop in Brooklyn. They are extremely hard to come by today and they do breach the 100 year old mark.
This example is rather unique in that he has the leather mouth movement, rolling eye winker and a hand shaker. I didn’t even know the hand shaker option was known this far back but it is original to this figure as the wire runs down the arm and attaches into the wood carved hand then the arm has the original straw filled muslin which has never been detached from the body.
Unfortunately the original legs were present ( kind of there as one was missing the lower portion) but no longer usable. I contacted Buzz at www.braylu.com and gave him all the measurements and he delivered me great new legs for this figure.
He came to me with no clothing but I happened to have the white tuxedo that you see him dressed in and once I had his suit on the name Louie the Lush just came out of my mouth. He does look sort of inebriated to me. So I hope you enjoy seeing this super rare early American ventriloquist figure.
Dan Willinger is a ventriloquism enthusiast and ventriloquist figure collector. He has been collecting for over 25 years. He created the Ventriloquist Central Collection. It now has over 100 ventriloquist figures and over 50 of them are Frank Marshall figures. Because of his love for the art of ventriloquism, Mr. Willinger created the website Ventriloquist Central. For more information about the website, go to: http://www.ventriloquistcentral.com
Copyright 2010 by Dan Willinger
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