Halsey Munson Americana
2707 Twin Oaks Court
Decatur, Illinois  62526
Phone:  217-972-4645

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Early 20th C. Carved Carnival Racer

Once every carnival boasted at least one horse- or dog-racing game with carefully carved and brightly painted wooden figures that were frequently the work of the same artists who produced the life-sized cigar store Indians. Today those early racers have mostly vanished and Arcade racing games today use cheap die-stampings or plastic. In the 1940s I grew up in Rye, NY, also the home of Playland Amusement Park with its merry-go-rounds carrying animals and chariots carved by Charles Carmel in 1915, and several racing games along the midway. This horse and jockey carving looks exactly like the ones they used in both form and structure. One of the concessions had racers said to have been carved by Marcus Illions in the late 1920s. This figure has the original iron carnival belly mount used in the early 20th C. The paint surface is superb.15½”L.