Every so often I'm asked to value a Stevens Decoy. Determining how much a buyer is willing to pay and a seller willing to accept is arbitrary unless one has skin-in-the-game. It may seem Decoy Auctions set the market these days, but such events depend on at least two bidders having ardent interest in the same decoy, at the same time, and under equal conditions. The variables are difficult to predict except by a broad range. In any case, auctions are sale events; they aren't the same as deal making.
Here’s what I offer about determining the value of a Stevens Decoy. First, you need to know exactly what you have. For that, there’s my book; The Essential Guide To Stevens Decoys. The section entitled “Five Ways to Identify a Stevens Decoy” will teach you how to recognize, authenticate, attribute and date a decoy made by Harvey and George Stevens. The Weedsportal Blog supplements my book with new discoveries, the latest updates, relevant theories, and insights to collecting Stevens Decoys . Then there's The Stevens Decoy Database which establishes every known species made by Stevens: hens and drakes; it contains examples from all time periods, both models, maker stamps, and collector markings. More than 650 decoys and 2,300 photographs are recorded with my notes on attribution, period, paint, condition, provenance, and the last 20 years of auction results. The database is not published, but rather it is the tool I use to establish a decoy's history and rarity. A value can be based on what the decoy actually is; not what is listed as being or sold for at action. If you have a decoy of interest, you can send me a few pictures (see email address on contact page) and I can give you a basic assessment. I can identify which Stevens brother is the maker, the rarity of the species, and what else might be known about it or similar examples in the database.
There's no fee, no expectation, no unsolicited offers will be made, and any solicited offers will be made with skin-in-the-game. This site is meant to be entirely useful to collectors wanting to learn about Stevens Decoys. Let's keep decoy collecting, and the Stevens Brothers, relevant in modern times. So please, subscribe free and send a link to this page www.stevensdecoys.com to a fellow collector or friend that may want to learn about decoy collecting.