Mystery Artist #8

Scrimshaw "Allen" on bracelet. Artist unknown
Scrimshaw “Allen” on bracelet. Artist unknown

“I cannot find any info on the artist of this piece.  i am not sure if the artist’s name is Allen, or it’s the name of the ship.  I have searched, and searched.  if i type in Allen scrimshaw artist, i get plenty of hits for the James Allen ship, that has many, many replicas.

“it would be greatly appreciated, if you could shed some light.  the bracelet is silver, very small….(scrimshaw is less than an inch and a half), and came from California…all I know.”

Anyone know the artist?  It is reminiscent of “Brum” ships, but Eduardo and his brothers were east coast, and there are some lines in the rigging that they would not have made, so I am figuring a west coast artist.  Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks to all who have helped unite previous mystery artists to the owners of their fine work!

6 Replies to “Mystery Artist #8”

  1. I also have a piece signed “Allen” – exactly like the signature above. It is a 5 sided Polygonal piece of whale bone. It was purchased around 40 – 50 years ago either in Nantucket or New Bedford, MA. Just like Marina above ” It is a pendant with the etching of a large whale and a small boat with 6 people on it. The whale appears to be on it’s back with the head and tail visible.”

  2. My brother passed away recently and left behind a number of scrimshaw items. At least a dozen items are signed simply as “Allen”. However, there is one piece that signed as Allen Scott. The “Allen” inscriptions appear to be the same artist. In fact a web search for scrimshaw artist Allen Scott produced a hit of the Charles W. Morgan scrimshaw done on a replica whales tooth.

    1. Dear Steve,
      Our sincerest condolences, we’ve recently lost some of our family as well.
      There are a lot of reproductions out there as well as a lot of artists. One of the artists is named “James Allen” whose work has also been reproduced and was known to sign his work with his last name. Another, “William Allen” was a scrimshaw artist who was born in 1809 and hailed from Florida (see Kendall Whaling Museum pdf). A rather gruesome account of a scrimshaw named Allen Scott can be found here. Another place that may help your research is Fakeshaw, also from the Kendall Whaling Museum.
      Hope this helps, let us know if we missed anything or if you have further questions.


      Andrew Perkins

  3. I also have a piece signed Allen. I purchaed it in Newburyport MA, maybe 30 or more yrs ago. I just recently came across it while going through old pieces that I had put away. It is a pendant with the etching of a large whale and a small boat with 6 people on it. The whale appears to be on it’s back with the head and tail visible. Like you, I wonder about Allen.

  4. it is printed, “sterling” on the back. maybe, that could help narrow down the time frame of this piece. not sure when they started doing that to jewelry.

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