There is currently strong demand for the work of Mouseman and other Yorkshire Oak, with pieces achieving consistently high prices at auction.
David Duggleby Auctioneers have extensive experience selling Mouseman and Yorkshire Oak furniture and smaller items. Being a Yorkshire company, we are located close to both the birthplace of Robert 'Mouseman' Thompson, Kilburn, and the locations of his many apprentices and followers. This means our auctions receive high levels of interest from local collectors. However, Yorkshire Oak is now collected across the world, with substantial collections located in North America and the Far East - in fact, the highest price achieved for a piece of Mouseman was at a sale in New York. Therefore, we also receive much attention from international buyers, and all of our sales have a worldwide online reach.
Robert ‘Mouseman’ Thompson (1876-1955)
was a furniture maker who lived and worked in Kilburn in Ryedale, North Yorkshire. He set up business producing hand-crafted seasoned oak furniture, and developed a signature of a carved mouse which he would add to almost every piece. Many of his apprentices, and some followers who never worked with him but admired his work, went off to create their own furniture, each choosing their own 'critter' signature.
Robert Thompson’s followers and apprentices developed their own signatures – including:
Thomas 'Gnomeman' Whittaker of Littlebeck (1910-1991) - Perhaps the most skilled furniture maker after Thompson, Whittaker is one of the few 'critter' carvers never to have worked for Mouseman, instead setting up his own business near Whitby.
Peter 'Rabbitman' Heap of Wetwang - A former ‘Mouseman’ apprentice, he set up on his own business near Driffield, carving a rabbit into each piece.
Colin 'Beaverman' Almack of Sutton-under-Whitestonecliffe - After training under Robert Thompson in the 1940s, he went on to establish his own workshop in 1960.
Alan 'Acornman' Grainger of Brandsby. - Established his own workshop ‘Acorn Industries’ near York.
Malcolm 'Foxman' Pipes of Carlton Husthwaite - Spent 20 years at the Mouseman workshops in Kilburn.
Wilf 'Squirrelman' Hutchinson of Husthwaite - Hutchinson established 'Squirrel Woodcarvers Workshop' in 1957.
Robert 'Wrenman' Hunter of Thirlby
Albert 'Eagleman' Jeffray of Sessay
David 'Oakleaf' Langstaff - Not technically a 'critter', Langstaff carves a leaf signature into each of his pieces.
Horace 'Knightman' Knight of Thirsk - Part of one of the newer workshops of Yorkshire carvers, established in 1984.