Made in the South

Decoy Ducks with History

A look at the hollow-bodied decoys made by South Carolina craftsman Tom Boozer

April/May 2014

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Bird in the Hand

Decoy maker Tom Boozer with a wood duck.

photo: Imke Lass

Boozer shapes a decoy with his antique drawknife.

photo: Imke Lass

Rarest Forms

A collection of finished ducks.

photo: Imke Lass

Bonus Images

The hollow inside of a decoy in progress.

photo: Imke Lass

The last step in Boozer’s process—cleaning varnish off the glass eyes.

photo: Imke Lass

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Boozer has carved over 3,100 birds and is also known for museum-quality boat models.

photo: Imke Lass

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Hard at work.

photo: Imke Lass

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The finished products.

photo: Imke Lass

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Boozer uses a variety of tools to carve decoys.

photo: Imke Lass

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photo: Imke Lass

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Decoys are primed with spar varnish and painted with exacting detail.

photo: Imke Lass

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Boozer builds each decoy “to go overboard,” be it destined for the mudflats or the fireplace mantel.

photo: Imke Lass