Antique Folk Art Identification and Value Guide

  • 01 of 12

    Peter Brubaker Carved Horses

    Folk Art Horses by Peter Brubaker
    Folk Art Horses by Peter Brubaker. Morphy Auctions

    From decorative accessories to toys, folk art takes many shapes and forms. These antiques and collectibles were generally handmade by untrained artists in the classical sense, although techniques like whittling or carving used may have been passed on from generation to generation. Many times the origin is unknown, but these pieces tend to reflect the culture of the region where they were produced. This is one area of collecting where beauty and craftsmanship are subjective, and values can vary widely.

    The carved wooden horses' pictures above are by Peter Brubaker (1816 - 1898). They were sold with a letter providing provenance that the horses have been in the Ebling family for five generations. They had minor age chips and cracks. Otherwise, it was in excellent condition.

    Selling Price: $21,600 (Morphy Auctions - 2/12)

    Note: Selling price does not include buyer's premium. 

    Continue to 2 of 12 below.
  • 02 of 12

    Carved Wooden Birds on Tree

    Wooden Folk Art Birds in Tree
    Wooden Folk Art Birds in Tree. Morphy Auctions

    Unsigned carved wooden folk art tree with 12 birds all intact, but the cat at the bottom is missing one of his ears.

    • Condition: Excellent Overall
    • Size: 20" tall
    • Selling Price: $230 (Morphy Auctions - 1.11)
    • Note: Selling price does not include buyer's premium. 
    Continue to 3 of 12 below.
  • 03 of 12

    Folk Art Civil War Soldier Doll Made From a Brush

    Soldier
    Ca. 1860 Folk Art Civil War Soldier Made from a Brush. Morphy Auctions

    The dolls head and torso were made from a wooden brush. The face was hand-painted. The right arm was made from a wooden spoon, and the left arm was missing.

    • Condition: Very Good
    • Size: 20" tall
    • Selling Price: $230 (Morphy Auctions - 5/08)
    • Note: Selling price does not include buyer's premium. 
    Continue to 4 of 12 below.
  • 04 of 12

    Wooden Elephant Pull Toy

    Wooden Elephant Pull Toy
    Ca. 1927 Folk Art Wooden Elephant Pull Toy. Morphy Auctions

    Here's a wooden elephant with dimensional ears, hooded with art deco design and bone tusks.

    • Mark on Bottom: BF 12/15/27
    • Condition: Very Good
    • Size: 21" W x 16" tall
    • Selling Price: $460 (Morphy Auctions - 10/08)
    • Note: Selling price does not include buyer's premium.
    Continue to 5 of 12 below.
  • 05 of 12

    Wooden Birds on Tree

    Wooden Birds on Tree
    Folk Art Wooden Birds on Tree. Morphy Auctions

    Vividly colored wooden folk art birds on a tree.

    • Condition: Excellent
    • Size: 26" tall
    • Selling Price: $345 (Morphy Auctions - 12/08)
    • Note: Selling price does not include buyer's premium. 
    Continue to 6 of 12 below.
  • 06 of 12

    Black Americana Balancing Toy

    Balancing Toy
    Black Americana Folk Art Balancing Toy. Morphy Auctions

    It is made of wood. It depicts an African American figure holding a balancing beam on a pedestal with multicolored paint.

    • Condition: Very Good to Excellent
    • Size: 10"
    • Selling Price: $143.75 (Morphy Auctions - 5/08)
    • Note: Selling price does not include buyer's premium. 
    Continue to 7 of 12 below.
  • 07 of 12

    Folk Art Cloth Doll

    Cloth Doll
    Ca. 1900 Folk Art Cloth Doll. Morphy Auctions

    A cloth doll with oil painted life-like features. It's wearing original handmade clothes.

    • Condition: Very Good
    • Size: 22" tall
    • Selling Price: $1,150 (Morphy Auctions - 10/08)
    • Note: Selling price does not include buyer's premium. 
    Continue to 8 of 12 below.
  • 08 of 12

    Folk Art Model of Log Cabin

    Log Cabin
    Ca. late 1800s to early 1900s Folk Art Model of Log Cabin. Morphy Auctions

    This antique includes eight figures of men, one child, a pig, a dog, and birds. It's damaged, with a loss to shingles and minor losses to carved figures.

    • Size: 19" x 21 - 1/2"
    • Selling Price: $805 (Morphy Auctions - 11/08)
    • Note: Selling price does not include buyer's premium. 
    Continue to 9 of 12 below.
  • 09 of 12

    Folk Art Carved Victorian Mirror

    Victorian Mirror
    Folk Art Carved Victorian Mirror. Morphy Auctions

    This antique is an ornate Victorian handpainted folk art mirror.

    • Condition: Excellent 
    • Size: 45" x 32"
    • Selling Price: $345 (Morphy Auctions - 12/08)
    • Note: Selling price does not include buyer's premium. 
    Continue to 10 of 12 below.
  • 10 of 12

    Folk Art Teddy Roosevelt Ship

    Teddy Roosevelt Ship
    Folk Art Teddy Roosevelt Ship. Morphy Auctions

    One of the White Fleet ships Teddy Roosevelt sailed around the world after the Spanish American War. Glass case included. Excellent condition.

    • Size: 25" x 39"
    • Selling Price: $1,265 (Morphy Auctions - 12/08)
    • Note: Selling price does not include buyer's premium. 
    Continue to 11 of 12 below.
  • 11 of 12

    Child's Primitive Folk Art Sled

    Sled
    Ca. 1900 Child's Primitive Folk Art Sled. Morphy Auctions

    A painted scene reminiscent of early 1900s postcard art. All original with unreadable paper label.

    • Condition: Very Good to Excellent
    • Size: 36" long
    • Selling Price: $1,150 (Morphy Auctions - 5/08)
    • Note: Selling price does not include buyer's premium. 
    Continue to 12 of 12 below.
  • 12 of 12

    Wooden Folk Art Open Wagon by Baine

    Wooden Open Wagon by Baine
    Wooden Open Wagon by Baine. Morphy Auctions

    Open wagon with three people and two horses — marked "Baine" on the wooden platform. Nice detail.

    • Condition: Very good to excellent
    • Size: 26" long
    • Selling Price: $540 (Morphy Auctions - 6/12)
    • Note: Selling price does not include buyer's premium.