Introducing Bruiser Brody
By Arturo DelFavero HLM552, Joseph Scalamoni LM1578
My 2009 specimen (on a VG nickel) was bought for $227.50 from a seller in Pennsylvania. My 2003 specimen (on an XF nickel) was also purchased on eBay, for $117.50, from a seller in Florida. Jeff's nickel was a gift from a neighbor. She was given it around the end of the Depression by a hobo in appreciation for food and being allowed to sleep in her parents' barn. That hobo said he was given the nickel by a man (another hobo?) named Willie whom he had helped. (See the BoTales article for the full story.) Thus I am nicknaming this old unknown artist "Willie Wideneck."
Collector and O.H.N.S. member Joseph Scalamoni sent me a photo of a hobo nickel during a discussion. He pointed out to me that the artist had created an angry tough faced subject with a possible chip on his shoulder. Immediately I noticed that I had at least one potential match to his specimen. Of course, I dug them out and proceeded to send out the images.
In the previous BoTales journal I had submitted two coins for the "Three is a Match" section which was added by our editor Ralph Winter some years back. This re-occurring area was created for members to use as a matching tool for the purposes of identifying and then nicknaming "Classic Era" artists. One of the coins shown belonged to me, while the other renderings owner has yet to be identified. The example I owned and the other were potential matches to Joseph's.
Now it was time for the voting commission to be involved to verify with that ever-important, positive, majority rule, nod. Along the way I found a fourth coin to add to our group of three submissions. The original three were indeed secured as matches to each other. It was decided that the fourth was a down the road potential, that is if another specimen surfaced to tie them all together.
As mentioned earlier, this all started when Joe sent me a photo of his nickel. We discussed the tough look on his face and that perhaps the artist was presenting a rough guy with a history of pugilism or prize fighting in his life. We started discussing old boxing terms such as palooka; tomato can, out on his feet, flat on his face, the sweet science, ready to go, and so many more. At this point we found it apropos to nickname our new friend with a label to do with the sport of mano a mano combat. I believe that Joseph picked the perfect name when he stated "Bruiser Brody." There is no connection to the 1970's-and 1980's pro wrestler of the same name.
The carving characteristics for "Bruiser Brody" are as follows:
- Derby hats some with bows and bands.
- Long ears that overlap or touch the hat brim.
- Engraved head and facial hair made with short cuts.
- Open cleaned up area between the beard and head hair extending from the bottom of the ear to the collar.
- Extreme profile changes which include a modified forehead, deep V notch above larger noses, lip work, and a cropped chin.
- Eye modifications, accentuated inner and outer nostrils.
- Downturned mouths which create an angry or malcontent look.
- Similar collars showing frontal adornments.
- LIBERTY removed on all three.
- Dates removed on two specimens.