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Mouseman - Robert Thompson

Mouseman is the sobriquet of Robert ‘Mousey’ Thompson (1876-1955), a vernacular furniture maker based in Kilburn, North Yorkshire using traditional construction methods. His pieces are characterised by a small carved mouse ‘signature’.

His furniture spawned a whole school of other Yorkshire vernacular craftsman working in the same vein with similar nicknames including Gnomeman, Squirrelman and Acornman – some of whom started out as Thompson’ apprentices.


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‘Mouseman’ commissions excel in the salerooms

05 July 2021

Smaller decorative pieces by Robert ‘Mouseman’ Thompson (1876-1955) continue to excel in the saleroom.

Mouseman powder bowl

Mouseman powder bowl stars in our pick of five auction highlights

25 June 2021

ATG’s weekly selection of items that caught bidders’ eyes includes one of Robert ‘Mouseman’ Thompson’s smaller decorative pieces that made over three-times estimate in Yorkshire.

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Bureau sets second-highest Mouseman result at auction

03 May 2021

Morphets (20% buyer’s premium) of Harrogate sold a Mouseman bureau for a tub-thumping £36,000 on April 15.

Oak Mouseman bureau

Unique Mouseman bureau stars in our weekly pick of five auction highlights

23 April 2021

ATG’s weekly selection of items that caught bidders’ eyes includes a purpose-built bureau that tripled its estimate in Yorkshire and made the second-highest ever price for a piece of Mouseman.

The Mouseman of Kilburn carving

Pick of the week: Mouseman figures squeak for themselves

15 March 2021

The highlight of a £75,000, 30-lot private collection of Robert Thompson oak carvings sold by Tennants was an anthropomorphic figure of The Mouseman of Kilburn.

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Dunhill lighter makes bright price but Mouseman leads Ilkley sale

01 March 2021

Dunhill Aquarium table lighters painted by Margaret Bennett and husband Alan in the 1950s-60s remain popular among collectors in these non-smoking days.

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A true mouse man carving comes to auction in Yorkshire

11 January 2021

The highlight of a private collection of Robert Thompson oak carvings to be offered by Tennants on March 6 is this curious anthropomorphic figure of the ‘Mouseman of Kilburn’.

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An early television transmitter and a Mouseman cupboard are among the six lots to watch at auction this week

14 September 2020

With estimates from £200-15,000 here are six previews of upcoming items this week.

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Carving much mightier than a mouse

24 August 2020

The Robert Thompson firm produced shire horses, such as this example offered by Lawrences (25% buyer’s premium) of Crewkerne on July 23, from the 1960s-90s.

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Rising market for Mouseman as bookends sell for £10,000

15 July 2019

A rare pair of bookends by Robert ‘Mouseman’ Thompson attracted huge interest and a remarkable £10,000 winning bid at Lawrences of Crewkerne.

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Benchmark prices for Horlicks’ ‘prime period’ Mouseman

15 October 2018

The Horlicks collection of Robert ‘Mouseman’ Thompson furniture was sold at Sworders’ auction for £236,000.

Mouseman dresser Horlicks collection

Mighty mouse: Horlicks’ Mouseman commission stirs up Essex auction room

10 October 2018

The Horlicks collection of Robert ‘Mouseman’ Thompson furniture was sold at Sworders auction yesterday for £236,000.

Mouseman oak chairs

Furniture from Mouseman’s major commission for the Horlick’s factory in Slough – one to watch next week

28 September 2018

With a loyal UK collecting base – and a growing number of fans overseas – Mouseman furniture of all periods has a strong following on the secondary market.

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Horlicks’ Mouseman furniture comes to auction

25 June 2018

The Horlicks collection of Robert ‘Mouseman’ Thompson furniture will be sold at auction in Stansted Mountfitchet this autumn.

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Mighty mouse roars to £5800

04 September 2017

Originally considered just another 20th century burr oak tallboy among a stack of material from a house clearance brought into the Hazel Grove rooms of Maxwells (15% buyer’s premium), opinions changed when a carved mouse was noticed on the lower left leg.

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Catching the mouse – twice

18 June 2011

IT is interesting to compare the commercial fortunes of these two similar, but not identical, Mouseman adzed oak sideboards sold at auction in recent weeks.

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Mouseman library to be sold in Yorkshire

14 April 2008

NORTH Yorkshire saleroom Tennants, who have made a name selling the furniture of Robert Thompson, have secured an entire Mouseman commission for sale in July.

Mouseman oak cupboard

The mouse roars in New York…

23 January 2004

Even if the buying power of Americans is not so much in evidence in Europe in some quarters these days, they appear much less reluctant to flex their financial muscles in their own back yard. This seems to be particularly true when it comes to decorative arts.

Specialist spots oak sleeper in garden venture

13 May 2003

A TIMELY debut for a garden and architectural items section at Andrew Hartley's April 9-10 sale (10% buyer's premium) brought in private buyers who usually fire this market but also a specialist who spotted a sleeper – a pair of carved oak corbels, each depicting the head of a cherub over an acanthus leaf and scroll base.

The ungnawn Beaver

06 January 2003

Coming up in Galashiels... The Yorkshire Arts and Crafts cabinetmaker Robert ‘Mouseman’ Thompson hardly needs an introduction. His distinctive adzed oak furniture, each piece relief-carved with a small mouse, proved so successful that a menagerie of imitators sprang up in the 1950s and ’60s.