Tuesday, January 5

by hannah

You've seen stuff like this forever, probably at your grandma's house if in the New England area (or cheap imitations in tickytacky shops). One family that made a living by carving these wooden figurines until the 1990's was headed by Gerald Pat Hannah. New Englandy subjects ran the gamut from fishermen to whalers, Pilgrims and chiefs, skiers to turn-of-century peddlars/hobos. Most of the males seem to smoke cigars, which get snapped off on the knocked around pieces. They run from maybe $20 to over $100 for nice examples now.
"Gerald Pat Hannah became interested in woodcarving in the 1920's and was influenced by the many French Canadian and Swedish woodcarvers from the Montreal area where he grew up. He started carving in the 1930s and made it into a career until his death in 1967. He went by Pat because he was born on St. Patrick's Day.

What started out as a hobby progressed to part time and then to a full time occupation. His market at that time was gift shops and retail outlets. many of them in the USA so he moved the family to Vermont in 1948. In the late 50’s he started signing his carvings on the bottom By Hannah.

His brother Charles Hannah learned from observing Gerald and also made his career out of carving.

Tom Hannah, another brother, went to school and became an accountant but carved as a hobby. He retired early and then carved full time. His woodcarvings are plentiful and probably the easiest to find. All three brothers have since passed away.

Gerald’s son, Duncan Hannah, continued the business until the early 90's when cheap imports flooded the market." -text and images via WyattSample's woodcarving store.

Below images via ebay.