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Ashby artist's decoys expected to fetch big bid at auction

These rare decoys, carved by Ashby artist Ole Gunderson, will be auctioned off later this month as part of one of the largest antique decoy shows in North America.

A very rare pair of pintail decoys will be auctioned off by the decoy auction firm of Guyette & Schmidt, Inc. at its annual spring decoy auction in St. Charles, Illinois on April 22.

These decoys were carved by Ole Gunderson (1883 - 1960) of Ashby, Minnesota. Gunderson, who is featured in the book "Minnesota Duck Decoys Yesterday's and Today's Folk Artists", by Doug Lodermeier, made decoys for himself and to sell to other hunters in the 1920s and 1930s.

This sale will be held at the Pheasant Run Resort in St. Charles, Illinois (Route 64, 30 minutes west of Chicago).

The auction is held in conjunction with the "National Antique Decoy and Sporting Collectibles Show," the country's largest antique decoy show, which is sponsored by the Midwest Decoy Collector's Association. It is the largest and one of the oldest decoy shows in North America.

This year's sale, with an expected gross of more than $2 million dollars, will provide buyers an opportunity to choose from over 700 lots of investment quality decoys and related items including duck calls, waterfowl paintings, and fish decoys. The auction will feature decoys from the collection of long time decoy collectors Joe French (Marathon, FL) and David Galliher (Muncie, IN). All geographic areas are well represented, but the strongest include Illinois River, Michigan, Louisiana, Ontario, Mason Factory, Virginia, and Maryland.

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Guyette and Schmidt, Inc. is the world's largest decoy auction firm. It holds three decoy auctions per year in different locations across the United States