Early 20th century folk art carved ventriloquist head of a Kentucky coal miner by an anonymous folk artist.
Recently got this with one other head (pictured in last photo), this head is the largest and measures 11 1/2" tall. These have been described as "Kentucky Talking Heads" and were carved for an early county fair.
The head is hand carved and is still fully functioning! When you press on the top part of the metal plate below the head, the mouth opens and you can make him talk. When you press on the 2nd metal bar at the bottom, the lever makes the eyes roll up and down! What I really like about this figure is the exposed mechanical works that you can see in the back of the head. Not only is it interesting to see how this anonymous folk artist created this head, but it has a nice anthropomorphic quality of an abstract face in the back and I've been tempted to display it that way as well.
I've decided to list this on eBay, as I have to pay for some other recent purchases and money is getting tight (as always).